Immediate Release: October 10, 2004
NEW HAVEN, Conn.-- One day after junior teammate Kevin Crawford (Lockport, N.Y.) put a 66 on the scoreboard, sophomore Jeff Wolniewicz (West Seneca, N.Y.) shot a final-round 66 (-4) to capture medalist honors and lead Binghamton to a six-stroke victory over the top teams in the Northeast at the Yale MacDonald Cup, contested at the par-70 Yale Golf Course. The Bearcats carded rounds of 290-301-297=888 to best Rhode Island (894), Hartford (895) and the rest of the 15-team field. It was Binghamton's second tournament win of the fall and first time the program has come away victories at Yale. The remainder of the top-10 was Army (901), UConn (901), Yale (905), Central Connecticut State (918), Brown (918), Iona (920) and Yale II (925).
The 54-hole event was contested over two days, with 27 holes recorded each day. Thanks to an opening-round 290 - six strokes better than any other round in the field - Binghamton staked itself to a three-shot advantage heading into Sunday. But looming was a Rhode Island team that has been the premier team in the region for the last several years. Playing with the Rams and host Yale in the final group, BU put up a 297 to win going away.
"The team has worked very hard all fall and this is a culmination of that work," head coach Nick Lasky said. "We are a young team but are gaining experience."
Wolniewicz shot 74-74-66=214 to win his first collegiate tournament by two strokes. His four-under 66 on Sunday featured two eagles (Nos. 7 and 16) and three birdies (Nos. 1, 15, and 17). With the individual and team titles on the line, Wolniewicz played the final four holes in 4-under, going birdie-eagle-birdie-par. On the par-4 seventh, he holed out a 115-yard wedge for a "2." Later, he made quick work of the par-5 16th with a drive, 5-wood and eight-foot putt for eagle. On Sunday, he finished up his second-round with a 38 on the back side, and then went 33-33 to seal the win.
"Jeff is our No. 1 player and he showed it today," Lasky said. "It's a special player who can finish 4-under in the last four holes of a big tournament. No matter where he is in the round he can get hot and string some birdies together. But doing it at the end is special. He finished with three straight birdies at Army last weekend. Jeff just doesn't get nervous. He couldn't have picked a better event to win his first collegiate tournament."
"The team played great," Wolniewicz said. "This was the toughest field we've seen all fall and we knew it would be big to get a win."
Sophomore Aaron Ungvarsky (Wilmington, Mass.) tied for fourth in the field of 81 with rounds of 71-73-74=218. Crawford wound up tied for ninth place (66-77-78=221). Freshman Zach Vinal (Syracuse, N.Y.) shot 79-77-79=235 to tie for 46th place, and junior Brad Moulton (Orangeville, Ontario) posted rounds of 83-82-83=248 to place 69th.
Crawford spearheaded BU's 290 (+10) on Saturday with four birdies and 14 pars en route to a sizzling career-best 66 that not only tied the school record for lowest round relative to par, but also set the school record for best round at the prestigious Yale Golf Course. One day later, Wolniewicz added his name to the same set of lists.
The Bearcats conclude their fall season with their home event - the BU NBT Bank Classic next Saturday and Sunday at The Links at Hiawatha Landing.
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