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Thursday, May 23, 2024
The Observer

Irish men place eighth at Gopher Invitational, women prepare for Mary Fossum Invitational

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Senior Palmer Jackson competes at the Fighting Irish Classic on Sept. 4


Comparing the Notre Dame men's golf team's performance through its first two events of the fall presents a dichotomy. On one hand, the Irish regressed on the leaderboard this weekend at the Gopher Invitational at Windsong Farm Golf Club in Maple Plain, Minnesota. After kicking off the season with their first tournament win in two years at the Folds of Honor Collegiate at American Dunes Golf Club in Grand Haven, Michigan, the Irish placed eighth out of 14 schools in their second competition.

But it isn't necessarily fair to say the Irish played worse. After all, they finished three strokes better, both in terms of net score and in comparison to par. Notre Dame shot an 857 that left them just four strokes shy of the proverbial podium.

Regardless of whether you view the team's performance as a step forward or back, there were some positive developments for the Irish. Freshman Jacob Modleski showed his potential, finishing fourth in the entire field in just his second collegiate event. Modleski was consistently strong and improved as the tournament progressed, shooting 71-70-68 across the three rounds.

Four Irish golfers recorded a combined seven rounds of par (71) or better. Graduate student Palmer Jackson bounced back from a rare opening-round struggle during which he shot 76. He flipped the numbers around to record Notre Dame's lowest score of the competition with a second-round 67. That score was tied for the second-best round of the tournament. Only Kansas' Will King had a lower single-round score with a 66 that he also posted in the second round.

With the men's team now two events into their season, the Irish women will head into their second event of the year in the upcoming weekend. The team will travel to Forest Akers West Golf Course in East Lansing, Michigan, to compete in the Mary Fossum Invitational. The Irish women's team previously competed in the Boilermaker Classic, finishing fifth with a team score of 879 (15 over par).

Like the men's team in Minnesota, a familiar face and a freshman paced the team in its season opener. Graduate student Lauren Beaudreau finished tied for fourth in the competition, shooting five under par and finishing strong with a third-round 67. Freshman Anna Heck wasn't far behind, tying for 17th at three over par in her collegiate debut.

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