AURORA, Ill. (WLCSports.com) - The Wisconsin Lutheran College men's golf team overcame a four-shot deficit after the opening rounds and pulled away from a crowded field over rounds three and four to win its third straight Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference championship by a five-stroke margin on Sunday and Monday at Stonebridge Country Club.
- Tournament: 2016-2017 NACC Men's Golf Championship
- Location: Stonebridge Country Club, Aurora, Ill.
- Course Info: Par 72, 6,815 Yards
- WLC Team: 1st of 9 (+103)
- Top WLC Individual: Garrett Ralston (+19), 2nd of 35
HOW IT HAPPENED
- The Warriors trailed by four shots heading into Sunday and Monday's final two rounds, as just six strokes separated fifth place from the tournament leader.
- Wisconsin Lutheran fired the lowest third-round score of 308 on Sunday to leap in front of the tournament field by five shots. WLC carried its strong play into the final round where it carded a team tournament-best 304, the second-lowest round of the day, to hold off runner-up Edgewood by five shots (1,255-1,260).
- Garrett Ralston (Machesney Park, Ill./Harlem), who earned All-NACC honors for the second straight season, finished second overall after carding a 155 over the final two rounds. Ralston rebounded from an 81 to shoot a 74, the third-lowest final round score.
- Tyler Wood (Eagan, Minn./St. Croix Lutheran) also joined Ralston on the All-NACC team after tying for sixth. Wood's third-round 73 was the second-lowest of the third round.
- Damon Gnewikow (Warrens, Wis./Tomah) shot consecutive 78s over the final two rounds to finish 14th overall.
- Tim Pridemore (Hartford, Wis./Hartford) made the biggest improvement over the last two rounds, lowering his score by 15 strokes for a final-round 74 to tie for 23rd.
- Derick Disch (Greenfield, Wis./Martin Luther) tied Gnewikow with a 156 (76-80) over rounds three and four to round out the championship lineup for the Warriors.
- Ninth-year head coach Adam Volbrecht earned his third straight NACC Coach of the Year honor and fourth overall after leading WLC to the first three-peat in NACC history.
- Edgewood's Zach Hentrich claimed medalist honors with a 14-over-par 302 (78-76-74-74) and was named the Roger Fleming Player of the Year. Teammate Dawson Hinz' 316 (81-77-79-79) tied for eighth and earned the Freshman of the Year award.
INSIDE THE SCORECARD
- The Warriors' fourth-round 304 was their second-best round out of 14 championship rounds played at Stonebridge Country Club. The team's final two-round 612 was just one off from its 611 at the championship a season ago.
- Wisconsin Lutheran was one of three teams in the championship field to lower its score in every round after the first.
- Men's Golf became the second program in WLC history to earn at least three consecutive NCAA Championship appearances.
- Four players tied their second-lowest round of the year at Stonebridge in Wood (73), Pridemore (74), Ralston (74), and Disch (76).
- Gnewikow carded a 78 in a round for the sixth time this year.
- 2. Garrett Ralston, 307 (76-76-81-74), +19
- T-6. Tyler Wood, 315 (88-76-73-78), +27
- 14. Damon Gnewikow, 319 (85-78-78-78), +31
- T-23. Tim Pridemore, 327 (81-83-89-74), +39
- Derick Disch, 240 (DQ-84-76-80)
- The Warriors advance to their third straight NCAA Championship, which will be held May 16-19 at Mission Inn Resort in Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla.