NEWTON, Kan. – Playing as an individual, sophomore Jared Knoepfel backed up his career low round of 74 on Saturday by carding an 80 on Sunday to conclude the two-day Bethel Invite. As a team, the Concordia University men’s golfers sliced two strokes off their score from the previous day while enduring tougher conditions and a more difficult course at Sand Creek Station.
The Bulldogs carded a two-day total of 337-335–672 for 18th place out of 19 teams at the tournament. Due to an injury that sidelined two-time all-conference performer Shawn Rodehorst, Concordia counted only four individual totals to its team scores on both days of the event.
For head coach Brett Muller, the improvement on Sunday allowed the team to take something positive away from the tournament.
“It was great to see Reid (Wiebe) pull it together today,” Muller said. “Conditions were drastically better than yesterday. Today it was a lot windier. We’re not where we want to be, but it was a definite improvement.”
Knoepfel entered the day in a tie for eighth and held onto a top 20 spot, checking in at No. 19 amongst the loaded field of more than 100 competitors. Out of the four performers in the Concordia lineup, freshman Russell Otten got the best results with a consistent 82-82–164 to tie for 59th place. The rest of the Bulldog quartet included Wiebe (85-80–165) and freshmen Payton DeVencenty (83-84–167) and Tyler Ehresman (87-89–176).
In addition, junior Sam Simonson also played as an individual. He turned in an 87-89–176.
Concordia now has nine days before GPAC Qualifier No. 3 is held at Whispering Creek in Sioux City, Iowa, on April 7. The Bulldogs sit in fifth place in the conference standings with a two-round score of 300-312–612. Four total conference qualifiers are held over the fall and spring seasons.
“This tournament opened our eyes,” Muller said of the Bethel Invite. “We’re not where we need to be, but we have nine days to knock off the rust and player better in the GPAC qualifier.”