Weather causes issues for Ichabod golfers

Luke Warnken, Washburn Review

The Ichabod golf team will have to wait at least another week to get back on the green.

The Bods traveled to Edmond, Okla. for the Central Oklahoma Classic, only to have it canceled because of mother nature.  

“It was about 38 degrees, steady rain and a 20-25 mile per hour wind,” said Nathan Hoefflin, senior golfer for Washburn.

Meteorologists predicted sloppy weather, but that didn’t stop UCO from attempting to hold their event.

“We knew it was going to be wet and cold, but it was worse than what we expected,” said Hoefflin. “We ended up playing about five holes before they called us off the course. There was just too much standing water on the course for us to play so they just canceled the whole thing.”

The Central Oklahoma Classic was suppose to be a two-day, 54-hole event but lightning and rain forced the players to leave the course for safety. Both days of play were canceled because the weather was not expected to improve this week.

With the cancellation, Washburn has only participated in one event this spring, the SoCal Intercollegiate Championships in La Jolla, Cali. The Ichabods finished in the back half of the invite, placing 11 out of 16 teams. 

Washburn will not get to participate again in an event until April 15 when they travel to Missouri for the Missouri Southern Invitational, the only event before the Bods take to the golf course for the MIAA Golf Championships. Hoefflin and the rest of the Ichabods will have to get back to the practice course, something they have been doing all spring.

“It’s really frustrating, especially for us seniors because it’s our last semester of college golf and we have hardly played,” said Hoefflin. 

Hoefflin is one of three seniors on the team along with Sam Schulte and Brian Walker. The rest of the team consists of redshirt freshmen and true freshmen. 

The Ichabods were looking for someone to step up after Riley Piles, a first team all-MIAA selection. The experienced Hoefflin was expected to pick up some slack, but he has struggled with consistency this season, finishing anywhere from seventh place to 79. The senior from St. Cloud, Minn. has plenty of underclassmen pushing him. Freshman Ronnie McHenry has provided a boost this season for the Bods. McHenry has managed to place in the top 25 in every event he has participated in. The Topeka native placed 13 in the SoCal Intercollegiate Championships, the best place of any of the Bod golfers. His play earned him MIAA golf athlete of the week. 

Although McHenry and Hoefflin have been solid for the Bods, Washburn has been shuffling around to find their top five. Redshirt Tyler Wright saw a lot of action in the fall, but did not participate in the SoCal Championships. Fellow redshirt freshman Trey Siegel has also seen a lot of time on the green for the Ichabods. Siegel got off to a hot start, finishing in the top 10 in his first four events. In the SoCal championships Siegel finished 25, the second best position for the Bods. 

It doesn’t help that Washburn has had to travel for every event this season. The Ichabods are not hosting an event this season, which takes away any home course advantage. The Bods may be familiar with the course they practice everyday on, but will not be able to compete against other teams on it. Instead the Ichabods are forced to practice just like they have done for much of this spring. 

“Practicing can be fun, but we all just want to get out there and compete as much as possible,” said Hoefflin. “That’s what we live for.”