Blog 358, 10,5,16 - Powered by Arneson's 65, Western Ties for 1st at Chico State

wwu win at chico
Well played Vikings!
Thanks largely to freshman Ezra Arneson's superb final-round 65 - the best round of the tournament by three strokes - Western Washington was able to leap from an overnight tie for fifth place into a share of first at the InterWest Insurance Wildcat Classic in California, Tuesday.
After three rounds at Butte Creek CC in Chico, Calif, the Vikings were tied with host school Chico State on 13-over 877. The team's final-round 286 was the second lowest score of the week, beaten only by third-place California Baptist's closing 283.
"The vibe from the moment these five got on the plane to head down here was excellent,” said head coach Luke Bennett. “The seniors took leadership from the start, and the freshman were fired up to be here. We played consistent all three days against very good teams in our region. I’ve told the guys over and over we can compete with anyone, and today we did that. A truly great team performance."
To break the tie, the unused scores were totalled (fifth best individual score from each team each day). Chico State's drop scores were two better than WWU's, but the tournament hosts presented Western with the trophy to take back to Bellingham.
Despite Arneson's final-round blitz in which he carded six consecutive birdies, it was actually Brett Johnson who led the Vikings, finishing tied for 10th individually on three-over 219. Arneson came in tied for 17th, a shot further back, after beginning the day tied for 66th. Jeff Marcum also tied for 17th on four-over 220. Ethan Casto, playing his first event for WWU, tied for 24th on 224, while fellow freshman and debutant Jack Shea tied for 69th on 232.
Ezra Arneson
Arneson's seven-under round tied for seventh-lowest score relative to par in the history of the WWU golf program. "It was phenomenal,” said Bennett. “For any player to record six straight birdies, and then maintain that through the rest of his round, is amazing."
Nic Beno from the Colorado School of Mines won the individual competition, shooting two-under 214 for the 54 holes.
The Vikings conclude their fall season October 17-18 at the Cal State Monterey Bay Invitational at Bayonet & Blackhorse Golf Club in Seaside, California.
Results here.

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