The Valparaiso University men’s golf team utilized an impressive second-round performance to climb from tied for 10th to tied for first in the 19-team Invitation at Savannah Harbor at The Club at Savannah Harbor in Savannah Ga. on Saturday. Valpo had the best Round 2 score of any competing team by posting a 283 in the afternoon session.
How It Happened
- Freshman Caleb VanArragon (Blaine, Minn. / Blaine) enters the final day of action tied for third in a 99-player field. He went two strokes under par with a 70 in Round 1 and then followed with another round under par by turning in a 71. His 36-hole score is at 141 entering Sunday.
- Jack Juskow (Greenville, S.C. / Hamilton Southeastern) put together an impressive turnaround from Round 1 to Round 2, trimming 12 strokes off his score. His 67 (-5) in Round 2 was the best 18-hole score of the day by any of the 99 golfers. He vaulted all the way into the Top 10 at t-seven.
- Charlie Toman (Chardon, Ohio / Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin) rounded out the trio of Valpo players in the Top 20 as he sits at t-16 through 36 holes. Toman notched a 75 followed by a 73 for a Day 1 score of 148.
- Brett Seward (Aurora, Ill. / Aurora Christian) went 77-75 on Day 1, while Garrett Willis (Fort Wayne, Ind. / Homestead) knocked 10 strokes off his Round 1 score with a 72 in Round 2.
Inside the Rounds
- Juskow’s 67 was the best round of the season by a Valpo player. There were five rounds of 69 during the fall slate.
- Juskow equaled a career best with his 67 as he previously posted that score at last season’s Wright State Invitational.
- Juskow’s round cracked the program record book both in 18-hole round low overall score and relation to par. The 67 is tied for sixth in program history, as is the five strokes under par. He became the first Valpo player to shoot five under or better in a round since Drew Alexander’s minus-six at the SIUE Derek Dolenc Invitational on Sept. 25, 2017.
- As a team, Valpo went five strokes under in the second round. That marked the team’s second-best round of the season behind 282 (-6) in the second round of the Crusader Collegiate on Sept. 16.
- The 283 ranks tied for fourth in program history for 18-hole overall round score. The minus five ranks tied for fourth in program history in 18-hole round low in relation to par.
- Valpo is tied with Delaware in the team standings at 584 (+8) entering Sunday’s final round. VanArragon is just two strokes behind Wright State’s Austin Schoonmaker and one stroke in back of Delaware’s Hugo Kedzlie in a tight battle for medalist honors.
Thoughts from Head Coach Dave Gring
“In the first round, we definitely had some rust to kick off, especially with our putting. We really struggled with our speed and with our putts inside of four feet. Our chips around the green were solid, but we really missed a lot of short putts. Also, we only had eight birdies and that’s not enough for our team in a given round.”
“The second round was one of our best birdie-production rounds this year. We had 24 birdies and an eagle and that’s going to lend itself to some low scores. I felt the guys really took advantage of scoring opportunities in this round and made a lot of good putts. More importantly, the guys really grinded out an important round for us, getting us all of the way back into a tie for first place going into tomorrow. It gives us a lot of confidence, erasing an 11-point deficit for our second round of the new year.”
“Caleb had four birdies in the first round and six birdies in the second round. The two double bogeys in the second round were not really poor shots, but he narrowly got himself into two hazards. Caleb’s ball-striking was terrific today and he had a lot of good looks at birdie throughout the day.”
The final 18 holes of the season-opening event will occur on Sunday as The Invitation at Savannah Harbor continues in Savannah, Ga. Links to live scoring are available on ValpoAthletics.com.