Iowa Claims Consolation Bracket Championship
March 22, 2011
Ball Ground, GA - The University of Iowa men's golf team answered to their first round loss on Sunday, with three-consecutive wins at the Callaway Collegiate Match Play. The three-match streak culminated with a win over the No. 13 Georgia Bulldogs Tuesday afternoon. The 3-1-1 decision over the eighth-seeded Bulldogs clinched the consolation bracket championship for the sixth-seeded Hawkeyes. Georgia Tech hosted the 16-team field at the par 72 Hawks Ridge Golf Club in Ball Ground, GA.
Senior Vince India shone for the Black and Gold, topping Georgia's Russell Henley in a commanding 6 and 5 decision. The Deerfield, IL, native took the lead from the beginning and stretched it out from there. India, ranked 11th as an individual, picked up holes 15 and 16 to give him a four-hole advantage just seven holes into the match. India fired an eagle on the par 5 hole four to clinch Iowa's largest win of the tournament.
Senior Brad Hopfinger halved his match with Harris English, earning one-half of a point for Iowa. After dropping the first hole, Hopfinger answered with a par on 12 to square the match. In a battle that saw seven squared holes, Hopfinger didn't fall behind once after the opening hole. He took the lead with a birdie at seven and held on for eight and nine, but English answered with a birdie of his own on ten to half the match.
Junior Chris Brant picked up a point for Iowa, topping Georgia's Hudson Swafford 2 and 1. The two teed off on 12 and remained all square after one, but Brant struck first with an eagle on 13. Brant stayed hot with back-to-back birdies on 16 and 17 that gave him a two-hole advantage. Brant posted 15 holes at or under par, including two eagles, for his second win of the tournament.
Junior Barrett Kelpin won his third match of the tournament in a dual that took 19 holes to decide. Kelpin, along with Georgia's T.J. Mitchell, battled back and forth for four of the first six holes before Kelpin took the lead at one. Mitchell regained the lead with as few as four holes remaining, but Kelpin recorded a par on 11 for a one-hole advantage with one remaining. Kelpin bogied 12 to square the match but responded with a win in the tie-breaking 19th hole.
Georgia's sole team point came from Michael Cromie who defeated Iowa junior Jed Dirksen. Cromie birdied 15 to take an early two-hole lead that Dirksen wasn't able to answer. Neither golfer posted a point for an eight-hole stretch that ended with a birdie from Cromie on eight. The match ended 5 and 3 in favor of the Bulldogs.
Tenth-seeded Duke won the championship with a 4-1 upset over fourth-seeded Illinois. Eleventh-seeded USC took home third with a 4-1 win over ninth-seeded Texas Tech. For a final tournament bracket, complete with individual scorecards, visit www.collegiatematchplay.com.
The Black and Gold will return to action at the LSU Collegiate Invitational April 2-3. LSU will host the 12-team field at their own University Club in Baton Rouge, LA.
Individual Match Results