Men’s golf finishes historic fall season

Tim Tillmanns carefully places the ball during the first round of the Big 12 Golf Championship at Prairie Dunes Country Club on April 26, 2021. (Archive photo by Sophie Osborn | Collegian Media Group)

The Kansas State men’s golf fall season concluded on Oct. 19, marking the end of the team’s most winning season in team history.

The season kicked off with the Wildcats fittingly claiming the title at the Wildcat Invitational. The team used their home course advantage at Manhattan’s Colbert Hills Golf Club with all five scoring lineup members — redshirt sophomore Cooper Schultz, senior Will Hopkins, graduate transfer Grayson Blunt, junior Luke O’Neill and sophomore Laurenz Schiergen — finishing in the top 15.

Schultz dominated in particular, claiming the individual title just ahead of teammates Hopkins and sophomore Nicklaus Mason who finished second and third respectively. 

The Wildcats carried their momentum from the season opener into the Old Town Collegiate in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. They took the crown by one stroke over the tournament host school Wake Forest. The five lineup members of Schultz, Hopkins, Mason, senior Tim Tillmanns and Schiergen all finished with the same score of 1 under par.

After the victory at Old Town, the Wildcats began to receive more attention. The team entered the top 25 at No. 21 in the coaches poll, Schultz was named Big 12 Men’s Golfer of the Month and head coach Grant Robbins signed a contract extension through the 2026-27 season.

K-State won back-to-back tournaments for the first time since 2009 and 1983 for consecutive season-opening victories. The Oregon State Invitational followed, giving the Wildcats a chance for the first three consecutive championships in school history.

The Wildcats momentum carried, making history at the invitational with the team’s third consecutive championship after a dominating 3-under-par performance, 14 strokes better than second place Washington State. Mason led the Wildcats, finishing 2 under par and claiming a share of the individual third place title.

The team then faced its toughest challenge yet in the Big 12 Match Play Tournament. The Wildcats opened with a victory over the reigning NCAA champion Texas Longhorns and tied the nationally top-ranked team Texas Tech. Momentum started to fade by the end of the tournament with the Wildcats finishing sixth, their only time not claiming first at a tournament this season.

The Wildcats are on pace for the lowest team stroke average in team history. Their spring season begins on February 13 at the Mobile Bay Intercollegiate in Mobile, Alabama.