BANKS, Ore. – Steady rounds by Alex Fitch earned the Linfield senior medalist honors and the Wildcats shot 591 to take the Pacific Fall Invitational by 10 strokes Sunday at Quail Valley Golf Course.
Sinking a 50-foot eagle putt on the 17th hole to secure the win, Fitch captured his third consecutive medal against Northwest Conference competition dating to last season.
And on a blustery day when nearly every contender saw his score balloon, Fitch followed up his opening round of 69 with a 70 on Sunday to finish five-under-par 139, three strokes better than runner-up Joey Duwe of Corban.
First-round leader Ryan Kukula of Willamette fired a 66 on Saturday but watched as his score mushroomed to 78 for an even-par 144.
Linfield’s A.J. Taylor (Jr., Kirkland, Wash.), who held third place after the opening round, finished tied for fourth after completing the tournament 68-81-149. Pacific’s Roger Hults nabbed sixth place with a two-round total of 69-81-150.
Two Linfield frosh were among the top-10 finishers. Thomas Arand (Soph., McMinnville, Ore.) shared seventh place with a 75-76-151 while Ryan Nolan (Soph., Tigard, Ore.) ended in 10th place at 71-82-153.
Linfield shot a collective score of 591, well ahead of runner-up Corban's 601. Willamette scored 605. Host Pacific was fourth at 623, followed by Whitman at 628 and George Fox at 631. Lewis & Clark had a pair of individuals compete, but received an incomplete team score.
“Golf is so hard to play at a high level every week,” said Wildcats coach Greg Copeland. “We don’t have a lot of ups and downs right now. What we’re really striving for is consistency.”
Copeland and the Wildcats have now won fall events on both Pacific and George Fox’s home courses.
“I’m pleased with where we’re at,” said Copeland. “It’s looking like we’re one of the teams to beat in the conference.”
AHEAD: Linfield heads to Spokane, Wash., to compete in the Whitworth Invitational Sunday and Monday at Spokane Country Club.
Senior is on a roll
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McMinnville, OR 97128