Oct. 14, 2008
Xavier Invitational - Final Results (PDF)
LOVELAND, Ohio -- Mike Van Sickle continued to add to his legacy as the most decorated Marquette University golfer ever by winning his school record eighth collegiate tournament Tuesday. The MU senior cruised to an eight-stroke victory at the Xavier Invitational, which began Monday at the Oasis Golf Club. The Golden Eagles were unable to defend their team title, however, finishing runner-up at the 20-team event.
"I thought Minnesota earlier this year was his most impressive win in terms of quality of play and the competition we were up against, but he played solid," head coach Tim Grogan said of Van Sickle. "This win looked easy for him, like a walk in the park."
Van Sickle shot a remarkable 17-under-par 199 (64-68-67), also a school record for a 54-hole tournament held at a par-72 course, and distanced himself from Toledo's Nathan Wine, who finished second at nine-under 207 (64-0-73). Van Sickle's opening-round, eight-under 64 Monday was the second lowest score in team history, while his cumulative score was six strokes better than his previous 54-hole low of 205, which Van Sickle shot as last year's Pacific Invitational, Marquette's next and final event this fall.
"It was very satisfying," Van Sickle said about the the ability to hang on for the win. "I knew that If I went out there and accomplished my objectives and stuck to my game plan, it would be tough for anyone to catch me. I knew that I was probably the most tested person at the top of the leaderboard. I've played with the lead, I've come from behind, and I've blown my fair share of tournaments to get to this point, to feel comfortable with the lead."
With a combined team score of 18-under 846 (282-278-286), Eastern Kentucky was able to dethrone the Golden Eagles as the invitational champions. Marquette led after the first round, but slipped and finished day one in third place. MU moved up a spot to place ahead of Campbell with a score of 13-under 851 (282-286-283).
"It was disappointing that we couldn't collectively finish off our rounds," said Grogan. "I thought we did a good job of getting ourselves in position to win the tournament, but just couldn't put it all together in the end. We had the best [team] score of day, which is always our goal on the last day. In a lot of ways its encouraging that we're right there, but discouraging that we give so many shots away."
Red shirt freshman Matt Haase rebounded from a 78 in the first round to post a four-under 68 in round three. Haase, who carded a pair of eagles, was the only Marquette player besides Van Sickle to shoot under 70. Red shirt sophomore Ben Sieg had the only additional sub-par round with a one-under 71 in round one.
Marquette finished ahead of other BIG EAST schools Cincinnati (16th place) and Georgetown (18th place).
The Golden Eagles travel next to Stockton, Calif., to compete in the Pacific Invitational. The three-day event will take place from Nov. 3-5 at Brookside Country Club. MU placed third at last year's event.
Xavier Invitational - Final Results
Oasis Golf Club
Par 72, 6,921 yards
1) Mike Van Sickle 199 (64-68-67)
T34) Matt Haase 219 (78-73-68)
T34) Ben Sieg 219 (71-74-74)
T43) Dustin Schwab 221 (73-72-76)
T43) Kelly Kretz 221 (74-73-74)
1) Eastern Kentucky 846 (282-278-286)
2) Marquette 851 (282-286-283)
3) Campbell 857 (288-275-294)
4) Austin Peay 858 (295-277-286)
5) Winthrop 865 (286-284-295)
6) Ball State 866 (293-279-294)
7) West Florida 871 (297-288-286)
8) Marshall 872 (284-287-301)
9) Akron 873 (286-287-300)
10) San Francisco 874 (287-292-295)
T11) Bowling Green 875 (285-289-301)
T11) Toledo 875 (296-282-297)
13) Maryland 878 (294-292-292)
T14) Princeton 879 (303-283-293)
T14) Xavier 879 (288-287-304)
16) Cincinnati 889 (306-291-292)
17) Ohio 890 (295-297-298)
18) Georgetown 893 (288-304-301)
19) Towson 894 (309-290-295)
20) George Washington 896 (307-287-32)