For the second time this spring, the Red Raider Golf team packed up their clubs and headed to a golf tournament. On April 3, they headed down to Nebraska for the two day, 54-hole Midland Invite. This was both a varsity and junior varsity tournament, so Northwestern brought all 10 golfers.
The tournament was hosted at the Freemont Golf Club. The participants played a full two rounds of golf on the first day. The Raider varsity team shot a combined 589, which made them the only team in the tournament to finish with both rounds under 300.
They shot 294 in the first round and 295 the second, which is 10 and 11 over respectively. The Raiders had four golfers in the top 10 individually.
Junior Evan Schuler led the team and was tied for first after the first day, shooting a 71 and then a 73.
Junior Justin Kraft and sophomore Austin Reitz were in a tie for third. Freshman Brock De Boer for the JV team was in eighth place overall after day one.
The team then traveled to the Oakland Country Club to play the third and final round of the tournament. The Raiders came into the second day with a 15-stroke lead.
The Raiders shot a 306 as the team was able to keep the lead and win the tournament by 10 strokes. NW had five guys finish in the top 15 and seven in the top 20. Evan Schuler and Justin Kraft tied for second overall.
Kraft shot a 74 in the last round and Schuler shot a 75. Junior Colton Kooima bounced back from a rough first day and shot two under par scoring a 70, which was the best score shot on day two. He finished in a three-way tie for sixth.
Reitz finished tenth, senior Ryan Christy 14th, and freshmen Dana Van Ostrand and De Boer tied for 19th.
Kraft felt that both of the courses the tournament was hosted at were tough, but the first day of the tournament was more of a challenge for the team.
“Both courses were tree-lined, but the first course was a little tougher than the second because there were more chances to shoot out of bounds, and 36 holes in one day is tougher mentally,” Kraft said.
Altogether, the Raiders did a great job playing well as a team.
“I feel like our whole team is making strides, and we are looking to peak at the GPAC meet,” Kraft said.
The Raiders will travel to Sioux City on April 12-13 to play in the Briar Cliff Invite. They are continually looking to improve their scores to prepare for the GPAC championships on April 24-25.