September 30, 2009

Men's golf battles through the wind on final day of Purple and Red Invite

Day-one results | Day-two results

LAYTON, Utah -- Some brutal weather conditions took the wind out of the sails of Northern Colorado's men's golf team down the stretch at the Utah/Weber State Purple and Red Invitational.

The Bears sat in fourth place out of 11 teams at the end of the day Monday -- thanks to a second-round school-record 10-under-par 278 team total -- but that strong showing did little to combat the near 40-mile wind gusts that plagued Valley View Golf Course on Tuesday afternoon.

Northern Colorado, which got about three holes in before Mother Nature reared her ugly head, shot a disappointing 306 Tuesday to fall to ninth in the final team standings.

"We really ran into some bad luck today," Bears coach Chuck Scheinost said. "Our good first-day showing actually came back to bite us a little today in that the lower teams on Monday got to start out pretty early on today and pretty much miss all the elements that we and some other teams had to face."

To Scheinost's point, consider the host Utes, who won the team title on Tuesday on their first playoff hole against Arkansas-Little Rock. Utah was in seventh at the end of the day Monday, meanding they were nearly finished with their entire third round before the winds came.

Still, it wasn't all bad news for Northern Colorado during the tournament. Juniors Stephen Bidne and Troy Sidabras both shot three-round totals of 215 (-1) and finished tied for fifth in the individual standings, giving the Bears top-10 finishers in two of their three events so far this fall.

And if it wasn't for that wind, Sidabras, who sat in second after Monday's rounds, might have given Northern Colorado its second straight medalist after Stephen Bidne took top honors last week at the Air Force Miranda Invite. 

"It's great to see us getting some production from more than just one person," Scheinost said. "We still need to get a little better scores at the No. 5 spot, but I'm pretty pleased with what we've shown so far this season."

Junior Nick Bisogno carded a 7-over-223 and tied for 32nd and senior Rich Lash came in 45th with a 10-over-226.

"I wish we could have shown a little better as a team out there and continued the momentum we've built up so far this season," Scheinost said, "but we just couldn't overcome. It's good experience for the guys, though. We're going to have some brutal conditions from here on out, so we'll learn from this and move on."