After years of trying, the Penn men's golf team finally completed a successful invasion of Annapolis. This weekend, the Quakers went to the Navy Invitational and defeated the Midshipmen on their own turf. The Red and Blue registered their best finish ever at the tournament, landing in sixth place overall, seven strokes ahead of 11th-place Navy. "The top four schools [in each region] are selected for the NCAAs, and Navy is perennially one of those schools," Penn coach Francis Vaughn said. "We have beaten them at other places, but we always seem to lose to them at their place. It's a big advantage to play on your own course. To beat them there, it gives us a one-up on them." Penn's 289 on Sunday represented an 11-stroke improvement from its Saturday showing, and it moved the Quakers up from 10th place, putting them within two strokes of rival Princeton at the end of the weekend. "I think they were a little disappointed on Saturday knowing they had the capability to play a bit better," Vaughn said. "Three-hundred and two was a very good score for the first day. Then shooting 289 was fantastic for us to come back and play well." The 289 matched the Sunday score of tournament champion Richmond. Second-place Rutgers and third-place Rollins shot the only better scores on Sunday in Annapolis, firing matching 286s. The Spiders were propelled to victory by Bryan Stark and Steve Lessing, both of whom shot 143 for the two-round event. Penn's top player, sophomore Chad Perman, shot a 73 on Saturday and a 72 on Sunday to finish in a 12th-place tie, seven strokes behind tournament champion Eugene Smith of Seton Hall. "Chad played very consistent golf, kept the ball in play and hit a lot of greens in regulation," Vaughn said. "He was one of our players that played tournament golf this summer. I think that helped him in both the first round and second round. He was able to maintain his focus for 18 holes." Quakers sophomore Peyton Wallace finished in 27th place with a 148, while senior Kyle Moran fired a 149. Junior Mike Russell also shot 149 for the weekend on the strength of a team-high seven birdies. Senior Todd Golditch rounded out the Red and Blue five, rebounding from a Saturday 80 with a 76 on Sunday. Penn did its best work on the Naval Academy Golf Course's par fives, averaging 4.75 strokes on the long holes, behind only the Spiders and Liberty, who both averaged 4.70 strokes. The Quakers next head to the links this Saturday and Sunday for the James Madison Invitational in Harrisonburg, Va.Comments powered by Disqus
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