Apr 28, 2009

Men's golf: Liberty announces back

by Chris McNair

The blazing sun shined brightly over the greens of the Patriot Club in Ninety-Six, S.C. last week as the Liberty University golf team competed in the Big South Conference Championship.

The three-day event took an early dip for the Flames, putting them behind the leaders by 21 strokes after the opening day.

On the first day of the tournament, every Liberty golfer, with the exception of sophomore Preston Dembowiak, had a rocky start. Dembowiak tied for 12th and paced the Flame five at four over par.

All-conference honoree Robert Karlsson tied for 26th and supporting all-conference honoree freshman Tobias Pettersson and junior Nathan Schenz-Davis also placed low, as each tied for 29th on the first day. Senior Jay Calvo finished tied for 35th out of 40 total golfers.

Coastal Carolina held a seven-shot lead over Gardner-Webb to remain in first place after the first day.

The second day was highlighted by the Flames’ comeback. Liberty climbed into the competition by shooting the second lowest team round of the day. The second-day boost propelled the Flames out of last place and into third place overall.
On the final day, Liberty shot the second lowest score in consecutive days, passing Gardner-Webb to finish the BSC tournament in second place. Coastal Carolina won the tournament by 31 strokes.

Dembowiak earned all-conference honors and finished tied for sixth, shooting 10-over par. Karlsson, the recently crowned Big South Freshman of the Year, finished tied for 12th place, Schenz-Davis tied for 21st and Pettersson tied for 25th. Calvo finished last out of the Liberty competitors and tied for 29th.

The 22nd Annual Cavalier Classic was scheduled to be held Saturday and Sunday at the Birdwood Golf Course located in Charlottesville, Va., but due to lightning in the Charlottesville area, the final round of the event was unable to be completed.

As a result of the stoppage of play, Saturday’s scores became final, giving South Carolina a seven-stroke win over Virginia.

Liberty finished 14th place out of 18 teams after play ended on Saturday. Karlsson tied for 28th at two-over par, while Dembowiak and teammate Calvo tied for 46th at four-over par. Jordan Frye and Jacob Singleton finished in 77th and 92nd, respectively.

Chris Watters competed as an individual and tied for ninth place after shooting one under par.

The tournament brings to a close a Flames season that saw them finish in the top three in five of their nine tournaments played, including one win at the First Market Bank Intercollegiate.


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