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November 30, 2009

2009-2010 Season - Golfers look forward to spring season

The Augustana men’s golf team has already been busy this fall, competing in four events in preparation for the spring schedule.  Coach Grey Giovanine is excited about this year’s group and the progress he has seen so far from his squad.  “The guys are working hard and already showing improvement,” he said.

The best performance for the squad this fall came early on as the Blue & Gold reclaimed the Vike-Fire-Scot Cup after finishing second last season.  Augustana edged out Monmouth for the team title and also saw junior Kyle Weigand (Leyden HS, Franklin Park, Ill.) win medalist honors with a round of 73.  Weigand is one of the top returning golfers this season and “will be counted on to continue to provide leadership with his play this season,” said Giovanine.  Weigand finished last year with a 79.3 scoring average and finished in the top two during the qualifying rounds with the team earlier this fall.  His average remained steady in the fall, finishing five rounds on the course at 79.4.

Junior Ted Keopple (Geneseo HS, Geneseo, Ill.) is “a steady veteran,” said Giovanine and shot a 76 at both of the first two events this season.  He had an 82.2 scoring average last season and lowered that to 80.0 in four five rounds this fall.  Junior Phil Litchfield (Benet Academy, Darien, Ill.) led the team at the Creek Creek Invite and “will be a key player this year,” said Giovanine.  Litchfield finished with an 80.0 scoring average a year ago and sits at 79.0 this season after four rounds on the course.  Sophomore Jordan Henry (Erie HS, Erie, Ill.) also returns after leading the Vikings with a 77.8 scoring average last season.  Henry was limited to two rounds this fall, but shot an average of 81.5 per round.

Giovanine is also looking forward to watching this year’s freshman class contribute to the success of the program.  “They appear to be a promising group of newcomers,” he said.  Drew Wiersema (Prophetstown HS, Prophetstown, Ill.) was the medalist for Augustana at the Duane Chaney Invitational to open the fall schedule and currently has a 77.5 scoring average in two rounds of action.  Jeff Paustian (Geneva HS, Geneva, Ill.) and Jon Grchan (Moline HS, Moline, Ill.) will also compete for a top five spot on the team.  Paustian has an 82.0 scoring average in five rounds on the course while Grchan is at 79.0 in two rounds of play.

The fall season concluded with the Red Poling Collegiate Classic in Dearborn, Michigan.  “The event is played at a first class TPC facility and is the highlight of the fall schedule,” said Giovanine.  Keopple led the Vikings with a seventh place finish and the Vikings placed sixth as a team.

The men’s golf team will resume competition in the spring with the team gearing up for a strong finish at the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin championship meet at the end of the year.  The first two rounds of action will take place on April 16-17 with the tournament wrapping up on April 30 and May 1.

Story written by Assistant Sports Information Director Adam Strand