D.A. Weibring champion Illini include David Kim, Alex Burge, Mason Jacobs, Charlie Danielson, Thomas Detry, Thomas Pieters and Brian Campbell.
Sept. 23, 2012
Normal, Ill. -
For the second straight week, Illinois continued its streak at a fall tournament. A week ago, the Illini claimed their third consecutive Wolf Run Invitational near Indianapolis. Today, the Illini wrapped up their fourth D.A. Weibring Intercollegiate title in a tournament hosted by Illinois State University.
"The goal was to go over there and win the tournament and I thought our players took care of business," Illinois head coach Mike Small said. "We played solid yesterday, which got us the big lead. Today's round wasn't a great effort, but it was solid enough to hold on to our lead."
Illinois shot a final round eight-over par 292 to finish the 54-hole tournament at +18 (870), some 21 strokes in front of second-place Central Arkansas (891). The host Redbirds (893), Missouri State (894) and Wisconsin (902) round out the top-five teams.
For the second straight tournament, Illinois' Charlie Danielson posted a round in the 60s. The freshman had 15 pars with the just one bogey in 18 holes. He chipped in for eagle on the par-four eighth to move into a tie for seventh individually at +6 (219).
"Charlie played awesome from start to finish," Small said. "I thought that was a big part of today."
Senior Mason Jacobs was Illinois' best finisher, tying for third at +5 despite a final round 76. The Metropolis, Ill., native put himself in position by shooting even par through his first 36 holes with a 70 and 72 on Saturday.
"Mason played well this weekend," Small said, "It would have been nice to see him get his first win, but he's playing steady for us."
Illinois once again took seven players to the tournament and reinforced the belief that team has quality depth. The Illini put four players in the top 10 and five in the top 12. Junior Thomas Pieters was ninth at +7 after a final round 73. Freshman David Kim was one stroke back in a tie for 10th at +8 after shooting an even par 71. Kim's round included five birdies.
"David Kim really showed us something," Small said. " He is going to find himself in the starting line-up if he continues what he is doing," Small said.
Freshman Thomas Detry, who will join Pieters at the World Amateur Team Golf Championship next weekend, finished at +9, good for a tie for 12th. Sophomores Brian Campbell (+12) and Alex Burge (+19) tied for 23rd and 45th, respectively, in the 81-player field.
"Mission accomplished," Small concluded. "It was a successful week. We have two wins out of the gate. There are things we need to tidy up. We got a little sloppy down the stretch, which is understandable with the big lead, but we need to be stronger than that. We're trying to build momentum these next two tournaments. We would like to continue that winning mindset next week."
Illinois competes in the always strong Olympia Fields/Fighting Illini Invitational on Sept. 30-Oct. 2. The tournament was moved back two days to avoid going head-to-head with the Ryder Cup, which is also in Chicago next weekend.