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MSU Billings women take 2nd in Vegas tourney, men finish 7th

Posted at 5:06 PM, Mar 09, 2019

(MSUB Athletics release)

LAS VEGAS – Senior Shealyn Hafer took second place at the Minot State University Beaver Invitational, and helped the Montana State University Billings women’s golf team finish second overall after the final round at Aliante Golf Club on Saturday.

Hafer followed a 77 on Friday with an 82 on Saturday, finishing with a two-round total of 159 to take second. She was just two strokes behind individual champion Eryn Ellis of Rocky Mountain College, who shot a 157 (76-81).

MSUB finished the event with a team score of 659 on the par-72, 5,939-yard course, as it shot a 341 on Saturday after a 318 on Friday. Rocky Mountain College slipped past MSUB to win the event by four strokes, with rounds of 328 Friday and 327 on Saturday.

“We beat ourselves as a team, and we need to learn to play to win when we have the lead instead of playing not to lose,” said head coach Jeff Allen, as his team held a 10-stroke lead over Rocky entering Saturday’s round. “I was happy with Shealyn’s performance, and she toughed it out. She struggled a bit more than yesterday, but she is a grinder and kept playing hard all the way to the finish.”

Renae Heisler, who held the individual lead after Round 1, finished in a tie for fourth place as she shot a 164 (75-89).

Tierney Messmer was close behind, as she tied for sixth place with a two-round total of 165 (84-81). “I was happy with Tierney Messmer,” Allen said. “She also had an improvement today and stayed tough when things weren’t going her way.”

Fellow freshman Kinsey Irvin finished just out of the top-10, as she posted a 171 (82-89) and wound up in a tie for 12th place.

Senior Sarah Schroefel and sophomore Sydney Rochford tied for 17th place, with each shooting a 177. Schroefel carded an 87 Friday and a 90 on Saturday, while Rochford finished with rounds of 88 and 89.

Morgan O’Neill, Anna DeMars, and Hayden Flohr of Rocky all finished in the top-10, as the Battlin’ Bears’ full lineup filled the leaderboard en route to the team win.

THE BUZZ: Hafer was picked as the St. Vincent Healthcare Player of the Day.

NEXT UP: MSUB gears up for its second tournament in Las Vegas next week, with the Winona State Warrior Invitational running Tuesday-Wednesday at Stallion Mountain Golf Club.

Minot State University Beaver Invitational
Final Results | March 9, 2019
Aliante Golf Club | Las Vegas, Nevada

Team – 1. Rocky Mountain College, 655 (328-327); 2. MSU Billings, 659 (318-341). Individuals – 1. Eryn Ellis, RMC, 157 (76-81); 2. Shealyn Hafer, MSUB, 159 (77-82); T4. Renae Heisler, MSUB, 164 (75-89); T6. Tierney Messmer, MSUB, 165 (80-85); T12. Kinsey Irvin, MSUB, 171 (82-89); T17. Sarah Schroefel, MSUB, 177 (87-90); T17. Sydney Rochford, MSUB (IND), 177 (88-89).

For the men, Payton Stott turned in his best round yet as a Montana State University Billings Yellowjacket, with a 2-under-par 70 in the final round.

The junior bettered his scores on Friday by 10 strokes, and finished in a tie for 15th place with a three-round score of 230 (80-80-70) on the par-72, 6,960-yard course. Stott’s marked improvement was a trend up and down MSUB’s lineup, as all five players contributed their best score of the tournament on Saturday. The Yellowjackets saved their best round for last, with a 305 in the final round to move one spot up the leaderboard. Overall MSUB finished in seventh place among the field of 10 teams, with a three-round score of 963 (331-327-305).

“I am happy that the men had an improved round, and it is a step in the right direction,” said MSUB head coach Jeff Allen. “We still have a lot of work to do, but with a few more days down here we should be able to get there more consistently.”

Stott’s round featured five birdies, including a string of four over the course of five holes on the back-nine. He also birdied the first hole, after a solid drive and a 125-yard approach shot that he stuck to two feet. “I was happy with Payton’s performance today,” Allen commented on the junior. “He showed some good leadership, and he played to his potential today. I look forward to him getting there a lot more consistently.”

Garrett Woodin wound up in a tie for 18th place, with a three-round total of 232 (81-77-74).

Sophomore Logan Martin broke through the 80 threshold, and jumped to 42nd place with a final tournament score of 250 (85-87-78).

Caleb Trost matched his best round from Friday with another 83, and took a tie for 43rd place with a final score of 251 (85-83-83).

Sophomore Riley Kaercher moved up two spots on the leaderboard on Saturday, finishing in 49th place with a score of 258 (87-87-84).

Logan Skalka of Westminster College rallied to win the tournament, as he edged Day 1 leader Isaac Westlake of Winona State University by a single stroke. Skalka finished with a 217 (78-71-68), with his final round score standing as the lowest of the tournament and one of just three total sub-70 rounds.

Skalka’s big effort helped Westminster claim the team title with a three-round score of 901 (318-292-291), as it edged second-place Winona State by just four strokes.

“Overall everybody made some strides with their game,” said Allen. “You could tell they are still a little rusty around the greens, but we will have two good days of practice and get ready for the next event Tuesday.”

THE BUZZ: Stott was named the St. Vincent Healthcare Player of the Day…his previous low round as a Yellowjacket was a 72, achieved in two different rounds during the Yellowjacket Fall Invite in September.

NEXT UP: The ‘Jacket men begin the Winona State Warrior Invitational next week in Las Vegas, with play running Tuesday-Wednesday at Stallion Mountain Golf Club. Next week’s event will be a two-round tournament.

Minot State University Beaver Invitational
Final Results | March 9, 2019
Aliante Golf Club | Las Vegas, Nevada

Team – 1. Westminster College, 901 (318-292-291); 7. MSU Billings, 963. Individuals – 1. Logan Skalka, WMC, 217 (78-71-68); T15. Payton Stott, MSUB, 230 (80-80-70); T18. Garrett Woodin, MSUB, 232 (81-77-74); 42. Logan Martin, MSUB, 250 (85-87-78); T43. Caleb Trost, MSUB, 251 (85-83-83); 49. Riley Kaercher, MSUB, 258 (87-87-84).