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No one quite knew what to expect last weekend when the Penn men's golf team traveled to Annapolis, Md., to compete in the Navy Fall Classic.

Not only was it the first tournament of the fall season, but the Quakers also had just one practice under their belts.

But if any expectations existed, the Quakers surely surpassed them.

Out of the 27 competing squads -- all except Vanderbilt within Penn's district -- Penn finished second only to the Commodores at the par-71 USNA Golf Course.

Golfers played 36 holes, 18 each on Saturday and Sunday.

As if to underscore the Quakers' impressive showing, the Red and Blue surpassed reigning Ivy League champion Princeton by 20 shots. At last year's Fall Classic, Penn placed sixth, finishing two shots behind Princeton.

Penn coach Francis Vaughn took five Quakers -- senior captain Mike Russell, senior Trey Best and juniors Chad Perman, Endel Liias and Peyton Wallace -- to compete at the Invitational. Together the team scored 585 while the first-place team, Vanderbilt, scored 574. The tournament par was 568.

All five Penn golfers scored under 80 on Saturday, while Russell's round of 71 placed him just two shots out of the individual lead. On Sunday, the team shot 289, the same score as top-finisher Vanderbilt.

Wallace, however, stole the show on Sunday with a two-under-par score of 69, a testament to a great day of putting.

"Shooting 69 is pretty spectacular," Best said.

Best had an impressive showing himself, shooting consistently with scores of 74 and 73, respectively.

Perman was just two shots over par on Saturday, but battled on Sunday, scoring a 78.

"I struggled [Sunday]. It was a tough day, but fortunately everybody picked me up," Perman said. "I'm not too bummed out -- I'm happy that the team did so great."

Working together as a team proved conducive to the team's impressive finish.

"They are a very talented team," Vaughn said. "It was nice to see them all play well together and help each other out."

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