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Miami golfers swings to 7th place finish at DA Weibring Intercollegiate

By Joe Gieringer
On September 25, 2012

As the last golfers made their way to the clubhouse at the D.A. Weibring Intercollegiate Sunday afternoon, the Miami University men's golf team found itself in the middle of the pack, finishing in seventh place. The Red and White felt it didn't have its best showing, notching a tournament score of 60-over par.

But there were some bright spots - one of which was the performance of freshman Jack Sparling who made his collegiate debut and finished with a final round, 2-over par 73. He shot a respectable 10-over par for the tournament, finishing tied for 13th place individually.

Sophomore Scott Cahill had the second best individual score for the RedHawks, tying for 32nd at 15-over par. Redshirt junior Mark MacDonald was not far behind, tying for 39th at 18-over par. Senior Ben Peacock tied for 45th at 19-over par and freshman Daniel Schwartz rounded out the Miami squad, finishing his first-ever college competition at 27-over par, tied for 71st place.

According to Peacock, the opportunity was there. The senior was disappointed in the team's lackluster performance, but more so at his own.

"It was just a matter of execution," Peacock said. "We had a good plan and we didn't execute. And I hit the ball extremely poorly all three rounds and ... I didn't bring my A game, B game or even my C game, so I've got to review."

Even within the framework of a less-than-stellar weekend, Miami still looks to take away some positives as the team settles in for two weeks of practice. One encouraging sign was the competitiveness of its two newly tested freshmen, with one topping the score sheet for the 'Hawks and coming close to a top-10 finish.

"Jack [Sparling] finished the best on our team and tied for 13th - that's impressive," Peacock said. "Daniel [Schwarz] struggled a little bit, but it was a great experience. He's got loads of talent and a bright future."

Redshirt junior Mark MacDonald hopes this early experience for the young players will make a big difference in the long run, as the competition to make the starting roster is getting even tighter while the RedHawks pass the halfway mark of their fall play.

"It was a great week for Jack," MacDonald said. "I know Daniel didn't play as well as he would have liked to but it was still a good experience for them to get their feet wet. The freshmen are going to be a big part of our success this year, and it's great to see that all of our members can back the team up."

With two weeks before its next tournament, Miami will use the time to refocus; that means increased attention to the short and approach games, but even more attention to the preparation and game management the RedHawks have been seeking to fine tune over the past couple weeks - something the upperclassman leaders are taking to heart.

"The short game is always something we need to work on, but being able to think our way around the course and making smarter shots is something we need to do," MacDonald said. "We didn't place our shots well and that hurt us quite a bit this week so ... we're just trying to get a little better each day and take each tournament as a chance to get better."

The 'Hawks return to action at the Firestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio in two weeks. They open play with two rounds of 36 holes Oct. 8th.

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