Temple golf seeks consistency after last-place finish

Temple finished last in the three-team Cornell Spring Invitational on Friday and Saturday in Jupiter, Florida.

Then redshirt junior John Barone watches his shot during practice on Nov. 1, 2018 at Blue Bell Country Club in Montgomery County. | SYDNEY SCHAEFER / FILE PHOTO

Temple finished last out of three teams at the Cornell Spring Invitational on Friday and Saturday in Jupiter, Florida.

“It was kind of a messed up event, so the scores don’t really matter,” coach Brian Quinn said. “There were supposed to be a few more teams, but they had to switch the event date to Easter weekend.”

Temple finished the tournament 63-over par, 39 strokes behind Cornell University and Dartmouth College, which both tied for first with 24-over par finishes.

The Owls struggled in the first round, and no starter managed to break 80 at the par-72 course. Junior Sam Soeth shot 87 in the first round, junior Trey Wren shot 84 and redshirt junior John Barone shot 81.

The Cornell Spring Invitational was the third event Temple played in this spring. The Owls finished 14th out of 18 teams at the Cleveland Golf Palmetto Intercollegiate on March 5 and 6, and they finished second to last at the Furman Intercollegiate last weekend.

Quinn said one of Temple’s issues of late has been upperclassmen play. The Owls’ highest finisher at the Furman Intercollegiate was freshman Dawson Anders, who tied for 70th.

“When your three best players aren’t getting it done, you are putting a lot of stress on the young kids and that’s not great,” Quinn said. “Trey, John and Sam are amazing players that are capable of winning any tournament they play in, but they just aren’t playing well right now.”

When Temple won the Cornell Invitational on Sept. 16 and 17 to open its season, Soeth, Wren and Barone each finished in the top half of the field. Barone finished second at 3-under par.

Despite a win at the beginning of the season, Quinn is still searching for consistency from his team.

Quinn said the team is currently a “work in progress” and the Owls haven’t been able to practice outdoors as often as he’d like.

“It’s been tough with the weather, Quinn said. “We haven’t been able to get outside and play. It’s just been really tough.”

“To be honest, it’s been a struggle since the second week of the year,” Quinn added. “I mean the kids just haven’t gelled together. I really don’t feel like we have any leadership.”

Just one more event —  Saturday and Sunday’s Princeton Invitational in Springdale, New Jersey — remains before the American Athletic Conference championship from April 22-24 in Florida.

Quinn feels the team has not played enough good golf in this shortened spring season.

“I might try to pick up a tournament in between Princeton and when we go to Florida because I gotta get these kids playing better,” Quinn said. “We gotta change the mojo.”

“If there is one positive takeaway, it is that there is nowhere to go but up,” Quinn added.

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