Wild Oak Golf Club
The Event...Northwestern College will compete in the first GPAC men's golf qualifier, hosted by Dakota Wesleyan, on Friday, Sept. 19 at Wild Oak Golf Course in Mitchell, S.D. The Red Raiders will play in the final group, along with golfers from Doane and Mount Marty, beginning on hole 10 at 12:40pm.
Teams Competing...All 11 Great Plains Athletic Conference members will bring teams to the event.
Format...This is the first of four, 18-hole rounds that will determine the GPAC team and individual champion. The winner will advance to play in the NAIA men's golf championship in the spring. Two of the rounds will be this fall and two of the rounds will be played in the spring. The second qualifier is scheduled for Sept. 29 in Fremont, Neb.
Last Year's GPAC Championship...Northwestern College finished fifth overall at last year's GPAC men's golf championship completed at the Fox Run Golf Club in Yankton, S.D.
In second place heading into final round, Northwestern shot a 320 and fell three spots to fifth in the final standings with a 72-hole score of 1,248 (+100). They finished 23 strokes in back of GPAC Champion Nebraska Wesleyan, who closed with a 303 and totaling 1,225 over the 72-holes. Midland won the fourth round with a 301 and finished a distant second, 14 strokes in back of NWU with a 1,239. Doane (1,245) and Morningside (1,247) finished third and fourth, respectively.
Both Ryan Kiewiet and Neil Malenke closed their outstanding Red Raider careers by finishing in the top five after the 72-holes event. Kiewiet placed third overall with a four-round total of 303, six strokes in back of GPAC individual champion Rory Doll of Nebraska Wesleyan. It marked the third straight year Kiewiet finished in the top five. Malenke, the 2013 GPAC Champion, finished one stroke back and tied for fourth overall with a four-round total of 304. Like his teammate, Malenke finished in the top five for the third straight year. Stanek, another Red Raider senior, tied for 24th overall with a 72-hole score of 325. Oltman, the fourth and final senior on this year's team, did not play in the first two qualifiers but finished a 163 (82/81) in the final two rounds.
Northwestern Line-Up...The Red Raiders have an average of 302.5 in the two meets played this season. They finished second at the two-day Siouxland Invite and fifth out of 16 teams at last week's DWU Invite in Mitchell, S.D.
Sophomore Ryan Christy leads the team with a scoring average of 75 and has two top 10 finishes. Freshman Colton Kooima is second on the team with a 75.3 average and has one top five finish. Justin Kraft (75.5), Evan Schuler (77.5) and Jordy Reinders (78.5) round out the Northwestern line-up.
Up Next...Northwestern will next play in the Midland Invite on Sept. 23, in a preview meet of the second GPAC Qualifier.