Temple played in its second-to-last event of the fall season this weekend in Stockton, California at the Visit Stockton Pacific Invite.
The Owls finished in 10th place in the 13-team field with a cumulative team score of 872 for the three-round event. While Temple was much closer to the bottom of the leaderboard than the top, its final score was 37 strokes better than the 909 it shot at last year’s Visit Stockton Pacific Invite.
Sophomore Trey Wren was Temple’s lowest scorer, finishing at one stroke under par for the event with a three-round total of 212. Wren came in at 11th on the individual leaderboard of 78 golfers. Wren was followed by redshirt-sophomore John Barone, who was three-over for the tournament and finished in a tie for 28th overall. Redshirt-freshman Erik Reisner was the next lowest man for the Owls finishing in 51st place with a three-round total of 222. Sophomore Sam Soeth and junior Mark Farley rounded out the field for the Owls, finishing at 14 and 23 strokes over par respectively.
Wren said the key to his good performance was good course management throughout all three rounds, particularly in the second round when Temple played the majority of its holes in torrential rains.
“It was just another tournament of going out and not making many mistakes and making birdies when I gave myself the opportunities,” Wren said.
Wren said that he felt it was one of the more difficult fields the team has competed against. Brigham Young University won the event at 18-under for the tournament which was 16 strokes better than second place schools Grand Canyon University and California State University, Sacramento State.
“Our expectations for each tournament are different,” Wren said. “BYU is one of the better teams we’ve seen all year.”
Temple finishing 37 strokes lower than it did one year ago in Stockton was an indication of improvement for Barone.
“It feels like the team getting better every week,” Barone said. “Us playing badly isn’t as bad as it used to be so we’re learning to manage our game a little bit better on the course.”
The Visit Stockton Pacific Invite was Temple’s first three-round event played over the course of three days in the fall. All other three-round events for the Owls have been played in two days which results in a 36-hole day to either open or close the tournament.
Barone said there was a clear difference this weekend in playing the three rounds in three days and not having a 36-hole day.
“It’s different because you have to learn how to manage your time because you have a lot of time between rounds,” Barone said. “I’m so used to playing 36 and then just getting out the next day and playing another 18.”
While Temple does lots of traveling in both the fall of the spring, most of it is up and down the Atlantic coast. This weekend’s trip to the west coast gave a young Owls team a chance to bond over a round trip cross-country flight.
Coach Brian Quinn believed the trip was a good experience for his team.
“There’s a lot of really good things going on,” Quinn said. “There’s great leadership on the team within the kids and awesome chemistry. I feel like the kids just truly enjoy each other.”
Team chemistry has been much improved this year said Quinn, who indicated he’s noticed several healthy relationships developing this season.
“We’ve done a 180 in that regard,” Quinn said. “I think everyone’s looking to each other not only as good friends but they’re sharing information and they’re helping each other.”
Temple will wrap up its season much closer to home next weekend with a one-round event on Saturday in the City 6 tournament in Huntington Valley, Pennsylvania.
Greg Frank can be reached at Greg.Frank@Temple.edu or on Twitter @g_frank6.