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Tigers top Warriors, claim Purple Cup

By Matt Oliver

FOREST CITY – Iowa Wesleyan University secured a win over the Waldorf College men’s golf team to claim the Purple Cup during Saturday’s match-play event.

With both teams sharing purple as a school color and players developing a competitive bond on the links, the friendly semi-annual showdown was born last spring.

“We came up with the Purple Cup as a friendly rivalry for both teams to get together once in the fall and once in the spring,” Waldorf coach Mark Clouse said. “The camaraderie that we have is excellent and it’s something that we like to do.”

NCAA Division III’s Tigers prevailed, winning two of four matches and tying in a third at Bear Creek Golf Course. They scored 41.5 points while the Warriors finished with 30.5 points.

The match-play event utilized a Ryder Cup format. Each hole won by a group of two players was scored as on point and ties earned half a point. The 18-hole competition was divided into best ball, best shot and alternate shot competitions.

Waldorf brought home bragging rights from the inaugural Purple Cup, topping Iowa Wesleyan in each hole of the event held at Fort Madison’s Sheaffer Memorial Golf Course in April. This time around, there wasn’t much separation between the two teams.

“It was very competitive,” Clouse said. “There was one lopsided match that really decided the Purple Cup. Besides that, a couple of matches were just decided by half a point.”

Waldorf’s duo of junior Hugo Becerra and freshman Zabdiel Flores tallied 9.5 points to defeat Iowa Wesleyan’s Bo Vitale and Kiley Miller, who earned 8.5 points in the first match.

Patrick Zielinski and Trent Hoekstra picked up the win for the Tigers in the second match, scoring 11 points while freshman Kole Hallmark and senior Nick Boswell turned in seven points for the Warriors.

The third match ended in a stalemate. Waldorf senior Austin Heeren and junior Thomas O’Rourke recorded nine points as did Iowa Wesleyan’s Tanner Travis and Michael Neff.

The fourth match featured Iowa Wesleyan coach Kurt Moon and Waldorf student assistant Cody Rozales. They racked up 13 points to best Warrior senior Rick Young and junior Chad Hein, who finished with eight points.

“The players love to get the coaches involved in it,” Clouse said. “It’s good because it gives us a chance to see each other in a different scenario. It’s a lot of fun.”

Taking on the Tigers provided the Warriors with a good tune-up as they prepare to host the Waldorf Invitational on Sunday at 11 a.m.

“We should be more than prepared to play on our home venue,” Clouse said. “A competitive practice round is nice to have the day before our home tournament.”