Season Review: Men's Golf takes steps forward with young roster

Season Review: Men's Golf takes steps forward with young roster

By Blake Moore

ADA — The Ohio Northern men's golf program took steps toward a successful future with a young roster during the 2018-19 campaign under sixth-year head coach Chad Bucci.

This season, the Polar Bears posted an 18-48-1 overall record and finished ninth at the 2019 Ohio Athletic Conference Championships with a 308-311-321-298—1238 at River Greens Golf Course in West Lafayette.

During the conference championship, senior Joshua Turich (Centerville) guided the Polar Bears with a team-low 75-78-82-71—306 to end 18th in a 45-man field. His 72-hole score over the three-day event tied his previous career-best mark established during the 2018 OAC Championships.

Meanwhile, senior Nick Anderson (Mason) and freshman Nolan Kimberly (Zanesville) tied for 31st overall with a 77-79-80-76—312 and a 79-76-78-79—312, respectively.

Junior Ryan Tatman (West Chester/Lakota East) ended tied for 40th with a 77-82-81-76—316, and freshman Jared Hernandez (Van Wert) took 43rd with an 82-78-86-75—321.

Turich also paced the Polar Bear lineup throughout the season with a team-best 77.4 stroke average over his 17 rounds played. Kimberly and Anderson rounded out the top-three individual performances this year with 78.5 and 80.0 stroke averages, respectively.

Four Ohio Northern golfers garnered Academic All-OAC honors this season, including Turich, Anderson, Tatman, and sophomore Ethan Smith (Chillicothe/Southeastern).

Turich, a senior studying mechanical engineering, collected his third straight honor.

In addition to leading the team in stroke average this season, he fired career-lows for a single round and 36 holes with a 71-74—145 to earn medalist honors in a home dual with Tiffin on April 13.

Turich has compiled a 79.66 stroke average in 59.5 career rounds during his four years with the Polar Bears. He also received All-OAC honors during his junior season after ending ninth at the 2018 OAC Championships.

Anderson, a senior civil engineering major, received his second career honor after winning the award in 2016-17 as a sophomore.

The Mason native ended third on the team with an 80.0 stroke average in a career-high 17 rounds. He posted season-best 18- and 36-hole scores with an 83-74—157 at the Otterbein Classic on April 6 and 7 and recorded a 72-hole career-best at the OAC Championships.

During his career, Anderson recorded a 79.2 career stroke average in 57.5 rounds at Ohio Northern. He has been named a 2018 GCAA Srixon/Cleveland Golf All-America Scholar and a two-time Academic All-OAC honoree.

Tatman, a junior mechanical engineering student, has received the honor the past two seasons.

The West Chester product ended fourth on the team this season with an 80.7 stroke average in nine rounds. He also carded a single-round season-best 76 on the final day of the 2019 OAC Championships.

Through three seasons, the junior owns an 80.76 career stroke average in 37 rounds.

Smith, a second-year biology major, received his first honor with the announcement.

This season, he finished seventh on the team with an 86.1 stroke average in 11 rounds. He posted a season-best 79 for a single round during day two of the Polar Bear Fall Classic on September 2. He also carded a season-best 36-hole score of 163 on two occasions, shooting an identical 82-81—163 at the Bluffton Fall Classic and a home dual against Tiffin.

In two seasons, Smith has played 26 rounds for the Polar Bears and recorded an 84.58 career stroke average.

Ohio Northern kicked off its 2018-19 campaign with a second-place finish at its own Polar Bear Fall Classic at the Colonial Golfers Club before competing in the Ohio Cup, two-day Bluffton Fall Invitational, the OAC Fall Championship, and the Defiance Fall Invitational during the fall slate.

Following winter break, ONU returned to action with an 8-4 loss to OAC foe Otterbein in a Ryder Cup-style competition at the Orange Lake Resort in Kissimmee, Florida on the team's annual Spring Break trip.

The Polar Bears would play one additional dual match during the season, defeating NCAA Division II institution Tiffin 637-656 on April 13.

Ohio Northern wrapped up their regular season slate with appearances at the Mt. St. Joseph Miami Whitewater Classic, the Otterbein Cardinal Classic, and the OAC Spring Championships.

The Polar Bears concluded the campaign with their ninth-place finish at the OAC Championships from May 3-5 at River Greens Golf Course.