Wheeling – Illinois Wesleyan was out to a comfortable lead entering the final round of the championship. Head Coach Jim Ott did not want his guys to get complacent especially when playing on a course like Robert Trent Jones. After one more day of high efficiency, the Titans are your winner. They shot 23 over as a team which was 13 strokes better than runner-up Methodist University.
“We had all five guys in the game today. We didn’t have anybody that was 7 o 8 over (and) whose score wasn’t going to count and when you keep all five of them in; something can go bad for one of them and we’ll be alright,” Ott said.
Of course, Ott and his team had to plan accordingly going into the championship.
“In central Illinois, everywhere where we’re from, everything is flat. Even before coming out here we were trying to find a course that we could play and there’s nothing to do so we got the yardage books out and took a lot of notes in the practice rounds as well from different distances and where the ball is landing… how much further do you need to hit it if its going uphill and how much less you need to hit it if it’ going downhill as well,” Ott said.
The scores were much closer entering the final day of play when the Titans won the 2019 championship. One of the golfers who enjoyed that championship as well was senior Rob Weuthrich. He obviously was more excited about his team than his individual performance.
“Nobody came in with an individual mindset of trying to win it individually. I mean, we all came in with one goal to try to win the championship as a team and wherever we placed if we got that championship didn’t really matter,” Weutrich said.
But, it is still an individual game. While the St. Louis area’s Webster University didn’t finish in the top five, Senior William Hocker had the best solo score overall at an eye-popping +2.
“This week, I’ve just been really comfortable (and) confident. I haven’t been pushing myself too hard. (I) felt comfortable with my game. I didn’t feel like I needed to urge anything or try and force anything and really just been really relaxed thanks to all of these people and family and friends,” Hocker said.
You also may have noticed Hocker’s bit peculiar facial hair. The award-winner explained his electric blue stache.
“I told them if we made the cut as a team I’m dying the mustache blue and I was supposed to do it on Wednesday but we finished late and I didn’t have enough time so I did it last night and I got it all in and I was honestly worried. I was like, man, I’m going to be wearing a blue mustache out here? People are going to be like who is this guy?,” Hocker said.