Men’s golf team ready for final regular season meet

Senior Jack Rickabaugh practices chipping at Colbert Hills Golf Course on March 9, 2017. (File Photo by John Benfer | The Collegian)

The Kansas State men’s golf team is set to take part in its last regular season meet for the 2016-17 season in the Hawkeye Invitational this weekend.

In their last meet at Old Waverly, the Wildcats placed ninth out of 16 teams. Freshman Levi Valadez led the way for Kansas State, as he tied for 15th with two under par. Fellow freshman Jacob Eklund shot one over par, which tied him for 30th.

Head coach Grant Robbins said he thought it was the team’s work on the greens that made the difference.

“The conditions were perfect for scoring today,” Robbins said to K-State Sports. “Overall, we played very solid but did not make enough putts to move up in the standings.”

Robbins said he was also pleased with the pair of freshmen.

“I am very proud of (Valadez),” Robbins said. “He earned a spot in qualifying this week and made the most of this opportunity with a top-15 finish. (Eklund) also continued to play steady.”

Teams competing against K-State in the 14 team field are Arkansas State, DePaul, Denver, Iowa, Iowa State, Kansas, Marquette, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota State, Texas Tech, University of Missouri-Kansas City and Utah.

The tournament will take place at the Finkbine Golf Course in Iowa City, Iowa. The course is a par 72 that is over 7,200 yards in size. The course also has a USGA rating of 74.6 and a slope rating of 134.

Tournament play begins for the Wildcats after the Hawkeye Invitational. K-State will travel to the Prairie Dunes Golf Course in Hutchinson, Kansas, from April 24-26 for the Big 12 Championship.

After that, the Wildcats will have some time off before competing in the NCAA Regional Tournament from May 15-17, at which the team will look to punch a ticket to the NCAA Tournament from May 26-31.