This past weekend’s Princeton invitational proved to be a special day for two members of the golf team as they accomplished something that hasn’t been done in coach Brian Quinn’s tenure.
Freshman Brandon Matthews and sophomore Matt Teesdale finished the event as co-champions shooting identical rounds of 69-71-69, (-4). The duo led the Owls to a second place finish, just two shots behind team winner Yale. Matthews and Teesdale led the Owls all weekend, finishing 14 shots in front of their nearest teammate, junior Matthew Crescenzo who finished with 223 strokes at the par-71 Springdale Golf Club in Princeton, NJ.
“Brandon and Matt carried the team this weekend, they played phenomenal, managed their games very well,” Quinn said. “It was a privilege to watch them this weekend; they battled some really difficult conditions.”
Quinn added that the rest of his lineup has to step up and compliment Matthews and Teesdale in the remaining weeks of the schedule.
“Matt Crescenzo played real nice this weekend, [Paul Carbone] and [Devin Bibeau] have struggled,” Quinn said. “They have to work really hard with the conference championships in just two weeks.”
Teesdale held the lead in the clubhouse until Matthews came to his 18th hole of the afternoon. Matthews, who started on hole 10 Sunday birdied the par-4 ninth hole, his last of the afternoon to gain a share of the championship.
“I think every part of my game was solid this weekend,” Matthews said. “The only part I could say needed to get better was my short game, it was nice to see everything come together this week.”
By earning co-medalist honors at the Princeton Invitational, Matthews has now won three times in 10 events as a freshman, he also won the Hartford Hawks Invitational and the Big 5 Invitational. The freshman saw this individual honor as special because he shared it with one of his teammates.
“It’s phenomenal to have [Teesdale] play like he did made it more special,” Matthews said. “The whole time we just had a lot of fun out there, we were talking to one another, he’s a great kid, he really deserved this.”
Teesdale started on the 10th hole Sunday; in his final round he recorded an eagle, three birdies and three bogeys. Teesdale, who sat out the fall season due to NCAA transfer rules got his first victory in just his fourth tournament. The sophomore, who transferred from Montgomery Community College was happy to get his first victory and also said it was special to share it with a teammate of his.
“It feels good, it feels really good, I made some good putts to save par when I needed to, I also struck the ball pretty well,” Teesdale said. “I couldn’t ask for a better person to share this with, it’s nice having two kids from the same team competing for a victory.”
Before the season Quinn called his recruiting class “the best recruiting class in the history of Temple golf,” in reference to Matthews and Teesdale. So far the two have fulfilled the preseason expectations set on them and then some. Quinn is one person who isn’t surprised at the two seeing success this early in the Temple careers.
“They’re both great players, they have huge upside and most importantly are great kids, Brandon is an extremely hard worker and continues to get better,” Quinn said. “Matt’s best asset is he’s very cool on the golf course, he just keeps plugging away, every tournament they play in they have the ability to win.”
The Owls are now on the back end of their spring schedule, they play in Purchase, NY this coming weekend at the Century Intercollegiate before heading to Coral Springs, FL in two weeks for the three-day long Atlantic 10 Conference Championship. Matthews sees the potential that this team has and expects team victories every time the Owls step on the course.
“I want to win it, there’s no doubt we can win it,” Matthews said of the A-10 tournament. “I think we have as much or more talent than any team in our conference, I’d like to go out with a win.”