No. 4 California Storms Back To Finish in Second Place at Windon Memorial Classic
Oct. 7, 2003
Glenview, Ill. - Coming off a disappointing first two rounds at the Windon Memorial Classic on Monday, the No. 4 California Golden Bears roared back to claim a tie for second place today. With one round to play, Cal was tied for tenth place - a full 20 strokes behind eventual champion Minnesota. The Bears carded a 277 (-11) the final day, while the next best final round score was the Golden Gophers at 288 (E). Cal finished with an overall score of 868 (+4), tied with Purdue (+4) and behind Minnesota (-5).
Cal had a rough start and finish to the first day of play on Monday. Seniors Peter Tomasulo and Jesse Ruda had opening round 72's (E) to pace the Bears but there wasn't much relief for coach Steve Desimone past those two. Cal finished the first round with a score of 295 (+7) a full 12 strokes behind first place Minnesota (-5).
In the second round, things were not much better. Ruda carded a 70 (-2) and freshman Brandon Beck posted a 73 (+1). But the other members of Desimone's squad floundered, as Cal posted an ugly 296 (+8). At +15, the Bears were 20 strokes behind the first place Golden Gophers (-5) and 17 strokes behind the second place Illinois Fighting Illini (-2).
Cal was in danger of having one of its worst tournaments in recent memory. Yet under Desimone, these Bears are never out of any tournament. The team collected itself and prepared for what they hoped would be a day of redemption on Tuesday. Their prayers were answered with a dazzling 277 (-11) - the lowest round score of the tournament by six strokes. Tomasulo led the charge with a 67 (-5), one stroke off the tournament record set last year. Senior Scott Carlyle broke out of his Monday funk to shoot a 68 (-4). Junior Jeff Hood posted a 70 (-2), while Beck's 72 (E) was the highest score that counted on the day for the Bears. Cal had three of the top five scores on the day. Desimone was thankfully able to throw out Jesse Ruda's 82 (+10), as each team could do so in every round with their highest score.
Tomasulo, finishing tied for ninth place, was the highest individual Cal finisher, carding a 216 (E), despite a second round 77 (+5). Peter Richardson of Purdue won the tournament with a sparkling 206 (-10). Overall, the individual results were not overwhelming for a Bears team that finished in second place, making it all the more remarkable that they somehow, someway grabbed the runner-up position. Minnesota had four finishers in the top 20 and Purdue had three. Cal only had two - Carlyle finished tied for 16th at +3.
Next Cal heads back to Berkeley, before they go to nearby Fairfax and host the second annual Alister Mackenzie Ivitational. At their home tournament, the Golden Bear faithful hope Desimone's team will not wait until the third round to flip the switch and show what they are truly capable of.
Top Five Teams1. Minnesota 859 (-5)2. Cal 868 (+4) Purdue 868 (+4)4. Illinois 871 (+7)5. Northwestern 878 (+14)
Top Five Individuals1. Peter Richardson, Purdue 67-68-71=206 (-10)2. Joe Affrunti, Illinois 73-66-72=211 (-5) Casey Strunk, Northwestern 73, 67, 71=211 (-5) Justin Smith, Minnesota 69, 71, 71=211 (-5)5. Heath West, LSU 70, 70, 73= 213 (-3)