Marquette Men’s Golf: Motz leads MU in final fall tournament

The Marquette men’s golf team was unable to overcome its slow start in the first round and finished in last place at the Stockton Covention and Visitors Bureau Pacific Invitational. The team shot a collective score of 897, 45 over par and 42 strokes off of first place.

Sophomore Michael Motz was the lone bright spot for the Golden Eagles as he finished two over par and 11th on the individual leaderboard. Motz started the third round in a tie for fifth place after shooting an even-par 71 and following it up with a 70 in the second round, but dropped in the rankings with a three-over 74 on Wednesday.

Coach Steve Bailey had hoped that his team would start to take advantage on the par-fives after the first round, but said his team’s high numbers on holes where birdies were reachable kept them well out of the running.

“We played the par-fives at 26-over combined, I believe, and we just had too many big numbers,” Bailey said. “We had 14 doubles as a team and five scores of triple or worse, and when you do that you dig too deep of a hole.”

The team also struggled with hazards and weather at times, but Bailey said there still wasn’t much he could say about the way Marquette performed.

“The weather got us a little on the second day,” Bailey said. “It was a little breezy, but there were really no excuses or answers for the way we played.

Sophomore Corey Konieczki had the strongest finish for the Golden Eagles shooting even-par in the third round, but said both he and the rest of the team struggled particularly on the greens.

“The greens this week were really tough and really fast,” Konieczki said. “With the speed of the greens it was hard to judge how far the ball was going to roll after you hit a chip.”

Konieczki believes that lack of experience has become less of a factor in the team’s overall struggles, and that the mental aspect of the game specifically took its toll in Marquette’s final outing of the fall.

“There were a few par fives where it was really risk-reward and if you don’t commit to the shot fully you really put up a big number,” Konieczki said.

Bailey said the biggest statistical problem the Golden Eagles faced was their lack of consistency. Behind Motz’s two-over-par finish, Konieczki’s 14-over effort was only good enough for a tie for 45th place in the individual rankings.