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Becerra, Hein pace Warriors in Augsburg Invitational

Waldorf Warriors LogoBy Aaron Schneider

HAM LAKE, Minn. – The Waldorf University men’s golf team opened the fall season with a 16th-place finish in the Augsburg College Invitational, wrapping up the two-day tournament on Sunday with a 36-hole score of 659 strokes.

“We got off to a very slow start obviously, but it gives us a clear picture of what we need to work on in the coming weeks heading up to our conference tournament,” Waldorf coach Mark Clouse said. “It was great competition with some of the best teams in the country, so it’s a good way to start the year.”

The Warriors competed in a tournament where the rest of the field was made up of NCAA Division III teams.

“These are some schools that we haven’t typically competed against, so it’s good to see some new faces and new competition,” Clouse said.

Seniors Hugo Becerra and Chad Hein led the Warriors, tying for 56th with 162-stroke totals. Becerra fired rounds of 84 and 78 while Hein carded an 87 and 75 on the par-72 layout at Majestic Oaks Golf Club.

Waldorf senior Thomas O’Rourke tied for 63rd, shooting a 164 on back-to-back rounds of 82. Sophomore Zabdiel Flores tied for 89th with a 171, turning in rounds of 86 and 85. Freshman Justin Pierce competed as an individual and tied for 98th with a 176 following rounds of 92 and 84. Senior Austin Sommer finished 103rd with a 195 on rounds of 107 and 88.

Saint John’s University won the tournament with 592 strokes. Bethel University (609), Nebraska Wesleyan University (609) and the University of St. Thomas (609) tied for second while Augsburg College (613), St. Thomas’ B Team (615), the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire (621), Concordia College (629), Saint John’s B Team (632), the University of Manitoba (634), St. Olaf College (635), Luther College (638), Macalester College (640), Carleton College (652), Gustavus Adolphus College’s B Team (656), Waldorf (659), Augsburg’s B Team (664) and St. Mary’s University (665) rounded out the team standings.

Nebraska Wesleyan’s Matt Unruh shot a 145 behind rounds of 75 and 70 to win the invitational.

The Warriors compete in Thursday’s NIACC Fall Invitational at Mason City, beginning at 10:30 a.m.

“We’ve had some really good success at our next tournament and I’m optimistic that trend will continue,” Clouse said. “It’ll lead right into our home invite, so we’ve got some good competitive rounds coming up. We’ve just got to get back at it, practice the little things, tie up some loose ends and we’ll be set.”

Waldorf also travels to Marion next weekend for the two-day Mount Mercy Fall Classic, scheduled to start on Saturday at 12 p.m.