(Team photo and tournament information courtesy of Ohio State Athletics Department. Tournament scoring and statistics courtesy of Golfstat)
The Buckeyes travel to Cincinnati, OH to defend their Big Ten Championship. The tournament will be played on the TPC River’s Bend course. It is a 54-hole event, with the first round scheduled for Friday, the second round Saturday and the final round on Sunday. Tee times off holes #1 and #10 for all three rounds.
Well, they were unable to win their 4th consecutive conference title, but did put together their best round of the weekend in their Sunday Surge. Their final round 287 (-1) was the 2nd best round of the day. Their three round total of 877 (+13) had them comfortably in 3rd position.
For the three rounds for the Buckeyes, Jaclyn Lee shot a 70 (final round, 218 total), Niki Schroeder 69 (220), Katja Pogacar 73 (222), Jessica Porvasnik 72 (224), Rio Watanabe 80 (220) and Zoe-Beth Brake 73 (229).
We Have Stats
For the three rounds, Ohio State played the par 3’s to an average of 3.02 strokes, +1 to par, placing them 1st in this category. They played the par-4’s to 4.27, +40 to par, placing them in 4th position. The par 5’s were played to an average of 4.87, -8 to par, ranking them 4th.
Ohio State carded 147 pars, placing them in 9th spot for this metric. Their 52 birdies ranked them T-1st. Their lone eagle (Niki Schroeder) ranked them T-2.
Let’s see how the players did:
Jaclyn 3 birdies, including one on her final hole. Nice finish. In her 11 hole stretch to close out her round; Jaclyn had 3 birdies, 3 pars, 4 bogeys and a double bogey – a little bit of everything. Jaclyn’s three day total of +2 to par placed her in T-5th in the 83 player field.
I’ve mentioned in this article that an even par final round is pretty good. A sub-par round (69) is even better. She had 4 birdies and the team’s only eagle (a 3 on the par-5 11th hole). She was totally in control on Sunday; in addition to her sub-par holes, she had 10 pars and only three bogeys. For 15 holes, she was -6 to par. Good grief. Niki finished 11th at +6 to par.
Katja fairly evenly distributed her scoring on her final round; 4 birdies, 4 bogeys and 10 pars. A tournament final round had a fine round of even par is a really good round of golf. Katja finished in 15th place at +6 to par.
Like Saturday, Jessica started out well, sitting at even par through 9 holes. Her 4 birdies, 3 on her back nine, provided the “oomph” to shoot an even par round. Again, an even par final round is generally a good thing. Jessica finished T-17th at +8.
Zoe-Beth led the Buckeyes on Sunday with a team high 5 birdies. She also had 8 pars, but a double bogey and a handful of pars slowed her down a bit. Still, after a difficult opening round, Zoe-Beth responded with two rounds that counted toward the team score. Zoe-Beth finished T-31st place at +13.
Rio had a difficult front nine on her final round (+6) which pretty much took her out of the team scoring. Through 14 holes, she was + 9, so things weren’t improving. Rio being Rio, she finished strong over her final four holes (-1) to shoot a good 38 on her back nine. Rio finished in T-31st at +13.
|B1G Championships||Rd 1||Rd 2||Rd 3||Total|
A Few Takeaways
- I’d hoped to see the Buckeyes “4-peat” in Conference titles, but this has still been a very good run for Ohio State. With the field average of over 77 strokes for all three rounds, a big final day push may have been asking a bit too much.
- In the first two rounds, OSU combined for 15 double bogeys and 3 triple bogeys. They cleaned things up significantly in the final round with only 3 double bogeys. The first two rounds came back to haunt them, but with OSU shooting the 2nd lowest score, the team was more focused, and it showed.
With the NCAA Regionals upcoming, I was glad to see Ohio State rebound with a sub-par round. That helps to form the mind-set that on a course that plays tough, they have the capability to shoot low numbers.
After a week off*, the Buckeyes tee it up May 8-10 in the NCAA Regionals. The Regionals will be held at OSU’s Scarlet Course.
*I seriously doubt that the Buckeyes will be idle in their ‘off’ week; they’ll be anything but idle.