The Iowa State men’s golf team played in the National Invitational Tournament hosted by Arizona State University that finished on the 28th February. The tournament was played at the Omni Tucson Catalina Golf Course in Arizona.
The team won the tournament beating the hosts by 5 strokes with a three round total of 832. This is their second title this season.
Nick finished in a tie for second with rounds of 66, 68 and 69. This is his 16th top 10 finish and his total of 203 tied for the third lowest 54 hole score in school history. The team score of 832 ties for the second best 54 hole tally in school history.
Iowa State head coach Andrew Tank had the following to say after the victory “This is a really special win for the program. Our guys have been putting in a lot of work and it’s great to see it pay off. We had a poor start to the spring after a succesful fall. The kids stepped up this week and they have been working harder. To go wire to wire is very rewarding. It says a lot about the guys on our team. With our starting five, you never know who is going to be the guy to go low. We feel everyone is capable of shooting in the 60s. That’s what you need to compete at this level.”
Nick’s team mate and fellow countryman Denzel Ieremia also finished in the top 10 by tying for fourth on 204. He also shot three rounds in the 60’s – 68, 67 and 69.
In Nick’s own words….
After a quick turnaround from Palm Springs, we made our way down to Arizona for the National Invitational Tournament hosted by the University of Arizona. We went down there with a specific purpose – we knew we were playing well and that good things could happen if we prepared well enough. There was still a bit of pain among the lads from the week prior, we knew that if we got ourselves in the same positon as last week (leading with a few holes to go) then we knew how to handle ourselves and how to execute. There was an extra level of intensity and purpose among the guys – we were hungry.
We prepared for this event like no event before. We truly knew what we were there to do – absolute commitment to our plans and executing them with grit and fight. We ticked off all the boxes and gave ourselves the best chance to play well. I was really proud of our preparation leading into the event.
A cool moment we shared was after the 36-hole day – where we sat around the dinner table with a small margin at the top of the leaderboard. A common theme that went around the table was that our job had just begun; we were in a position we wanted to be in AND NOW it was time to live up to our philosophies and express ourselves – when everything was on the line and people were chasing us. We handled the extra pressure amazingly because we were prepared for it – there was no surprise or confusion among the guys that we were in that position, we had worked for it and we wanted it.
Looking back on the team victory – I can comfortably say that the best thing about the whole week was the way our team operated in the days leading up to the event. Our preparation was world-class and something we will try to replicate throughout the rest of the spring.
Omni Tucson National Catalina Golf Course
The Catalina Golf Course is the host to over 30 PGA Tour events and is the annual host of the University of Arizona Invitational. The course has been selected as one of Golf Digest’s “75 Best Golf Resorts in North America.” It is parkland style with 8 sparkling lakes and 80 bunkers. The 18th hole iss considered to be one of the finest and most challenging finishing holes on the PGA Tour.