No. 5 finish in national Washburn school record

Christopher A. Smith / Campus Editor

After a one-year hiatus from the National Tournament, Washburn’s golfers returned with a top five finish in the 2006-07 season.

The team ended the year by winning the MIAA championship and qualifying for nationals for the fourth time in the last five years. Washburn strengthened its reputation as a nationally known golf school by finishing a school record fifth in the country.

“It was a good showing,” said Ryan Deutsch. “John [Robbins] played really well for us throughout the National Tournament.”

Robbins and Deutsch both ended their junior years by earning honorable mention on the Golf Coaches Association of America All-America team. Matt Ewald was a second team All-American in his sophomore year. All three made first team all MIAA, and Ewald was named the conference’s Most Valuable Player.

“Our goal every year is to win the MIAA championship and to win all five of the tournaments that count toward the conference points,” said Ewald. “We’d like to sweep all those tournaments, and that’s something we did last year.”

Ewald had a team best 72.9 stroke average, Deutsch had a 73.8 average, Robbins averaged a 75.7 and Matt Lazzo, a Wichita State transfer, finished the season with a 74.6 average. Taylor Dunham, the only team member not returning for the 2007 season, finished his collegiate career with a 76.2 average.

“Every year Washburn’s gone to nationals, we’ve improved,” said Ewald.

The Ichabods beat their previous high finish of 10th, which they set in the 2004-05 season. The team was in third after the first day of the National Tournament, dropped to eighth on day two, then outplayed every other tournament team on day three to jump back into the top five, where it would finish 10 strokes behind first place Barry University (Florida). Beginning with a tournament Sept. 10, the golfers look to build on their experience and continue the trend of improving on a yearly basis.

“We had a pretty good season last year, but it still could have been a lot better,” said Deutsch. “With the talent we have, there’s no reason we can’t improve again this season.”

Golf Schedule

Sept. 10-11 Kiawah Island Invite Kiawah Island, S.C.Sept. 17-18 Truman Bulldog Classic Kirksville, MoSept. 24-25 NSU Men’s Golf Classic Tulsa, Okla.Oct. 2-3 Drury Invitational Springfield, Mo.Oct. 8-9 Fort Hays State Invitational Hays, Kan.