Junior Golf
Mueller's Final-Round 66 Helps Him Win Southwestern
Written By: twywrot@umich.edu

» Using a final-round 66 (-6), senior Kyle Mueller rallied to win the Southwestern Jones Invitational by one shot with a 208 (-8) tally.
» The medalist honor is the fourth of Mueller's career -- 2014 Wolverine Intercollegiate, 2016 Windon Memorial Classic and 2017 Aggie Invitational.
» With a 910 total, the Wolverines finished 12th as a team at the Southwestern Invite.
» The Wolverines finished the front end of their spring break trip. After three more days of practice, U-M hosts the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Site: Westlake Village, Calif.
Course: North Ranch Country Club (Par 72, 6,994 yards)
Tournament: Southwestern Jones Invitational
U-M Team Standing: 12th Place of 15 Teams (306-303-301/910)
Top U-M Individual: Kyle Mueller, 1st (71-71-66/208, -8)
Next U-M Event: Sat-Sun., March 3-4 -- host Desert Mountain Intercollegiate (Scottsdale, Ariz.)

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. -- Using seven birdies and a final-round 66 (-6), University of Michigan men's golf senior Kyle Mueller captured the individual title today (Tuesday, Feb. 27) with a 208 (-8) total at Pepperdine's Southwestern Jones Invitational held at the North Ranch Country Club. U-M finished 12th with a 910 team total.

With frost and rain delays slowing play the entire two days of the event, it would not stop Mueller as he tallied 17 total birdies during the 54 holes. He led the field in par-4 scoring (3.93, -2) -- the only sub-par golfer -- and was six-under on par 5s.

Following a two-hour frost delay in yesterday's opening round, Mueller carded a 71 (-1) to position himself among the top three individually. Before the day's second 18 was called due to darkness, he was even through 11 holes putting him in second with seven remaining.

With Mueller and the field returning to finish the second round after yet another delay this morning, he posted a second straight 71 (-1) to finish 36 holes three shots back of Tennessee's Lorenzo Scalise. Moving straight into the final round, a run of four straight birdies on the back nine (Nos. 14-17) and another three straight on the front (Nos. 4-6), Mueller closed with a 66 (-6), while Scalise bogeyed his final hole yielding the title to Mueller, who won with a 208 (71-71-66, -8).

"This one feels really nice," said Mueller. "I didn't hit the ball particularly well, but kept it in play and played smart. I am just very pleased with my putting improvements over the offseason. The rain and hail delays were definitely weird but we've experienced very similar conditions before, so it was an easy adjustment."

"Kyle really played a special round today and then held on nicely at the end," said U-M coach Chris Whitten. "The course played really tough which was obviously good for him. Normally his ball striking is what keeps him near the top of the leaderboards, but this week it was mostly his putting which is great for the future. He's really done some great work with Coach Patrick (Wilkes-Krier) and it's nice to get good results, too. We're all really excited for him."

As a team, U-M descended all three team totals 306, 303 and 301 to finish 12th with a 910 total. Freshman Charlie Pilon cracked the top 50, tying for 47th at 231 (80-75-76), while junior Nick Carlson tied for 56th at 234 (75-80-79) to round out U-M's top three Wolverines.

In other tournament action in Santa Clarita, freshman Connor Prassasused a 76 and back-to-back 71s (-1) to finish seventh with a career-best-tying 218 total at the TMU Invitational held at the Sand Canyon Country Club. Teammate and sophomore Taisei Negishi was also at the event and tied for 40th at 233 (76-83-74).

With the first leg of the spring break trip completed, the Wolverines will travel to Scottsdale, Arizona, for a three days of practice and training before hosting the 2018 Desert Mountain Intercollegiate, Saturday and Sunday (March 3-4). The 54-hole event will be played on the Outlaw Course.

Final Team Standings

1. UCLA 285-292-279 = 856 (-8) 2. Pepperdine 294-287-295 = 876 3. Tennessee 290-309-292 = 891 4. San Diego State 293-305-295 = 893 5. UC Davis 302-296-296 = 894 6. SMU 305-298-293 = 896 7. San Jose State 302-296-302 = 900 8. Denver 302-302-299 = 903 Washington State 298-299-306 = 903 10. Oregon State 303-314-287 = 904 11. New Mexico 304-303-300 = 907 12. MICHIGAN 306-303-301 = 910 13. Augusta 309-302-306 = 917 14. Long Beach State 314-296-309 = 919 15. Loyola Marymount 310-313-310 = 933 

Top Individuals

1. Kyle Mueller, U-M 71-71-66 = 208 (-8) 2. Lorenzo Scalise, Tennessee 67-72-70 = 209 3. Hidetoshi Yoshihara, UCLA 71-73-69 = 213 4. Cole Madey, UCLA 70-73-72 = 215 5. Clay Feagler, Pepperdine 71-70-75 = 216 Devon Bling, UCLA 74-73-69 = 216 Noah Goodwin, SMU 74-71-71 = 216 Anthony Cecere, Pepperdine 75-70-71 = 216* 9. Joshua McCarthy, Pepperdine 73-74-70 = 217 Tyler Collier, UCLA 73-75-69 = 217 

Other Michigan Individuals

T46. Charlie Pilon 80-75-76 = 231 T56. Nick Carlson 75-80-79 = 234 T74. Henry Spring 82-77-83 = 242 78. Ian Kim 80-88-80 = 248 T69. Brent Ito 76-83-80 = 239* * playing as individual
College Corner
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