Marquette Men’s Golf: Motz leads Golden Eagles once again

The Marquette men’s golf team finished in 11th place out of seventeen teams at the Windon Memorial Classic after shooting a collective 42 over par. Sophomore Michael Motz led the team shooting 7 over par over three rounds and placing in a five-way tie for 33rd on the individual leaderboard.

Motz and senior Matt Haase both started the tournament with team-best 71s in the first round and 72s in the second, but had poor third rounds resulting in the team’s middle of the road finish. The Golden Eagles stayed in 11th place until the third round when 10 additional strokes dropped them into the 12th position.

Coach Steven Bailey said that although his team had shown some bright spots, they struggled mightily with big numbers and a lack of consistency within rounds.

“I think in all facets of our game we just weren’t consistent overall,” Bailey said. “That was the best field we’ll probably play this year with two top ten teams out there. Our guys down the stretch made some good runs with birdies. CJ [Swift] put together a good one today and Will (Joiner) birdied four out of five holes in a stretch on Sunday.”

Haase echoed his coach saying the Classic had actually been the best showing as a team this season based on the competition and poor conditions, but that a bunch of simple mistakes plagued Marquette throughout. he said.

“The pins were very tough today, and it was much windier, but I actually played probably the best 16 holes I have played,” Haase said. “I threw it all away at the end and made a bad decision on my 17th hole and finished with a double bogey on my 18th hole.”

Motz said that the Golden Eagles did a good job of playing tough and grinding out each round, which they had focused on in the previous week’s practice, but that the poor conditions on the final day had hampered the team overall.

“I don’t want to blame it on the conditions, but it was pretty windy out there and there were some challenging hole locations,” Motz said. “I think everyone’s ball striking struggled a little bit (yesterday), and I don’t think anyone was getting up and down as much as they would’ve liked.”

Bailey told his team after the tournament that they had to focus on staying mentally consistent and not allow one shot or one situation to compound into bad stretches. While taking in the positives of competing well against a very challenging field of opposition, he said that the team is still looking for a good top to bottom performance to allow them to come up with a higher finish.

“It’s just a matter of piecing it all together and having all five guys show up in one round,” Bailey said. “I told the guys after the tournament today that we need to make sure we are making honest assessments of our weaknesses, and that’s what we’re going to be doing this week to get ready for the Pacific Invitational.”