Sept. 20, 2013
The University of Iowa men's golf team will travel to Lake Forest, Ill., to compete in the 17th annual Windon Memorial Classic, hosted by Northwestern, Sept. 22-23. The tournament will be held at The Knollwood Club. The first round consists of 36 holes on Sunday, which will begin with a shotgun start at 9 a.m. (CT). The 18-hole final round begins at 8 a.m. on Monday with tee times. Live stats will be available via Golfstat.com.
The 16-team field is led by 2013 NCAA 10th place finisher Arkansas and defending 2012 Windon champion Ohio State. In addition to the Buckeyes, the Big Ten Conference is represented by Northwestern, Iowa, Michigan, Penn State and Purdue. Coastal Carolina, Kent State, North Texas, DePaul, Lamar, Tulsa, Harvard, Marquette and UC Davis round out the field.
Seniors Ryan Marks, Steven Ihm and sophomore Voramate Aussarassakorn will make their second appearance of the year after playing in the Golfweek Conference Challenge on Sept. 15-17, and juniors Joseph Winslow and Brian Bullington make their season debuts on Sunday.
Located in Lake Forest, Ill., The Knollwood Club plays to a 7,202-yard, par-72 layout. The Knollwood was designed in 1924, and has hosted numerous prestigious amateur events, including the USGA Amateur and Mid-Amateur Championships. Knollwood last hosted the Windon Memorial in 2000, when current PGA Professional Hunter Mahan won individual medalist honors as a freshman at Oklahoma State.
LAST WEEK AT SPIRIT HOLLOW
The University of Iowa men's golf team tied for sixth in the 15-team Golfweek Conference Challenge in Burlington, Iowa, on Sept. 17, with a 54-hole total of 875 (+11). The Hawkeyes posted a 286 (-2) in their final round, moving to sixth place after beginning the day in ninth. Senior Ryan Marks led Iowa all three days of the tournament, finishing 13th individually with a score of 216, his best career finish as a Hawkeye. Senior Steven Ihm finished with a 218, tying for 24th. Freshman Raymond Knoll registered a 224, tying for 42nd in his first career collegiate tournament. Sophomores Nate Yankovich and Voramate Aussarassakorn tallied scores of 221 and 223, finished in ties for 32nd and 37th respectively.
FIVE STRAIGHT NCAA APPEARANCES
Since taking command of the University of Iowa men's golf program in 2007, head coach Mark Hankins has established the Hawkeyes as a competitive force in collegiate golf. Iowa has advanced to NCAA Regionals each of the past five seasons, and has advanced to the NCAA Finals three of the last five seasons.
IHM WINS SUNNEHANNA AMATEUR
Senior Steven Ihm joined elite company as he won the 60th Annual Sunnehanna Amateur on June 16th. PGA TOUR professionals such as Rickie Fowler, Webb Simpson, and Lucas Glover won the same event early in their careers. The Peosta, Iowa, native shot an eight-under par (272) for the four-round tournament, winning by two strokes over Cory Whitsett of Alabama. A month later, Ihm earned a sponsor's exemption to the John Deere Classic, making his first career PGA TOUR appearance. The senior birdied his first hole of the tournament, and is believed to be the first UI golfer to earn a sponsor's exemption to the Silvis, Ill. tournament.
THREE HAWKEYES TO WATCH
Senior Steven Ihm and juniors Brian Bullington and Joseph Winslow were named to the 2013-14 Big Ten Men's Golfers to Watch List. Ihm, currently 46th in the Men's World Amateur Golf rankings, had the lowest scoring average (71.4) for the Hawkeyes during the spring season, playing nine rounds at or below par. The Peosta, Iowa, native played in his first PGA TOUR event over the summer after earning a sponsor's exemption to the John Deere Classic. Bullington, a native of Frankfort, Ill., finished the 2013 regular season with three-straight top-24 finishes, compiling a 73.92 spring stroke average. Winslow was a second team All-Big Ten selection, a PING All-Midwest Region honoree, and was named to the All-Big Ten Championship Team in 2013 as a sophomore. His 73.48 stroke average ranked 10th best in program history.
DEFENDING THE HARDWARE
Iowa captured two tournament titles in 2013, and will return to both venues to defend their championships this season. The Hawkeyes won the Big Four Championships in Chandler, Ariz., last February, with five players going 2-0 in match play. Iowa beat Drake, 6-0, in the first round and defeated Iowa State, 5-1, in the final round to take the title. Iowa's second title came at the Boilermaker Invitational in West Lafayette, Ind., tying for first-place out of 18 teams. Senior Steven Ihm earned co-medalist honors just one week after medaling at the Hawkeye-Great River Entertainment Invitational in Iowa City, Iowa.
This is Iowa's first appearance in the Windon Memorial under head coach Mark Hankins.
STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE
The Hawkeyes had the 37th-ranked strength of schedule in the nation in 2013, according to Golfweek.com. This year's schedule is nearly identical to the 2013 slate, with the only changes coming in the addition of the Windon Memorial Classic (hosted by Northwestern) in Lake Forest, Ill., and the ASU Thunderbird Classic (hosted by Arizona State) in Tempe, Ariz.
A PROGRAM ON THE RISE
Iowa has won eleven tournaments since 2008, had twelve individual medalists since 2009 and has had three All-Americans since 2008. Last season, senior Steven Ihm and junior Joseph Winslow became the 11th and 12th Iowa players to be named to the all-regional team since 2009.
HEAD COACH Mark Hankins
Head coach Mark Hankins is in his seventh season as head coach. He has guided the Hawkeyes to five straight NCAA Regional appearances, and to the NCAA Championships three times in the past five years. Iowa was ranked 155th when Hankins took over the program in 2008, yet the Hawkeyes have been consistently ranked within the top-60 for the past three years. Hankins is a native of Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.