CSU men's golf rallies to win Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational

 

2015 Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational Results

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The Colorado State men’s golf team – behind top-15 finishes by four Rams – stormed back from as many as six strokes down during the final round of play to move past Day 1 leader Colorado for the team championship at the 2015 Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational at Air Force’s Eisenhower Golf Club Blue Course.

“I’m so proud of our boys,” said Rams’ head coach Christian Newton, who captured the second team title of his career and once again credited a total team effort. “They played great all tournament. We were at least six back during today’s round and they kept fighting.

“Kyler was 3-over through three, and battled back to shoot 2-under. After struggling yesterday Blake posted a great round that was huge for us. Jimmy gave us a good round in case someone slipped up. Dom's third-place individual finish was awesome and the foundation for a great team finish. Max was good physically as always, but did really well in staying level emotionally. To win a tournament that I competed in as a player will be something I’ll never forget. I’m just so happy for our boys.”

Senior Dominic Kieffer posted the Rams’ top individual finish, taking home a tie for third. The Byron, Minn., native shot a 6-under 210 for the tournament, closing with a 3-under 69 to jump five spots up the leaderboard during Sunday’s final round. Kieffer finished six strokes behind individual medalist Philip Juel-Berg of Colorado, but was one of four Rams to tally top-15 finishes.

“Today was awesome,” said Kieffer, who notched the third top-10 finish, and best individual finish of his CSU career. “I gave myself tons of good looks at birdie all day long so you're bound to make a few of them. And everyone on the team came out with great attitudes and battled hard to come up with this victory. It was an awesome experience making the last putt for the team win. It's always nice to beat our in-state rivals over in Boulder.”

Redshirt freshman Kyler Dunkle, playing in the first tournament of his collegiate career, and sophomore Max Oelfke each finished three strokes behind Kieffer’s pace in a five-way tie for seventh place with a three-round score of 213 (-3). Both competitors improved their standing during Sunday’s finale, with Dunkle’s 2-under 70 moving him up from a tie for 15th, while Oelfke rose three places with a 1-under 71.

Junior Blake Cannon rounded out the scoring for the Rams on Sunday, finding his rhythm after struggling during the first and second rounds on Saturday. Cannon closed with a 1-under 71 to move up 19 spots and finish in a tie for 52nd in the 88-player field.

Jimmy Makloski was the fourth Ram to finish in the top-15 individually. The junior from Pueblo, Colo., slid from a tie for 10th into a tie for 15th with a three-round total of 215 (-1).

True freshman Jake Staiano, competing as an individual, finished tied for 35th after carding 5-over 221 in his college debut. Sophomore Colton Yates, also competing as an individual, withdrew from Sunday’s final round with back pain. Yates had been stellar during the first two rounds on Saturday, sitting in a tie for sixth through 36 holes.

Overall, Colorado State (849) finished three strokes ahead of second-place Colorado (852), and 14 strokes ahead of third-place Wyoming (863). Weber State (866) and UTEP (867) rounded out the top-five.

The Rams return to action next Monday and Tuesday, hosting the fourth-annual Ram Masters Invitational presented by Pedersen Toyota at Fort Collins Country Club. Colorado State captured the RMI team title at the 2014 event.