OLYMPIA FILEDS, Ill. - Stanford men's golf won the 2022 Fighting Illini Invitational, finishing with an even-par 280 on Sunday and claiming a dominant 12-stroke victory over a stacked field at Olympia Fields Country Club. Junior Michael Thorbjornsen claimed his first collegiate victory, firing a 4-under 68 to win by one stroke over Florida's Ricky Castillo and 36-hole leader Illinois' Adrien Dumont de Chassart.
The preseason No. 15 Cardinal claimed its first season-opening tournament win since the 2014 Southwestern Invitational at North Ranch Country Club and its second Fighting Illini Invitational title of all-time (2011). The Cardinal came out on top against an impressive field which included seven of the nation's Top 11 teams: No. 2 North Carolina, No. 3 Florida, No. 5 Arizona State, No. 7 Oklahoma State, No. 9 Texas, No. 10 Pepperdine and the hosts No. 11 Illinois.
Thorbjornsen became the fourth Cardinal (six times) to earn medalist honors at the event, joining Patrick Rodgers (2011, 2012), Cameron Wilson (2013) and Maverick McNealy (2014, 2015). He began the day tied for sixth at 3-under and was even through nine holes Sunday. He'd catch fire on the back nine, though, with birdies on No. 11, 13, 15 and 18 to pull off a come-from-behind victory for his first collegiate win. In the victory, Thorbjornsen led the field in Par 4 scoring (-4), was tied for sixth in Par 3 scoring (-1) and was 2-under on the Par 5s. His 39 pars and 11 birdies over 56 holes were both in the top five.
Stanford got strong play from all four scorers each week. Fellow junior Karl Vilips tied for sixth, his fourth career Top-10 finish, leading the field with 12 birdies. Ethan Ng's tie for ninth marked his best finish since the 2020 Southwestern Invitational. Barclay Brown also finished tied for 12th in the team victory, Stanford's first since the Colonial Collegiate last fall.
Stanford finished the week tied for first in Par 5 scoring (-12), tied for second in Par 3 scoring (+3) and fifth in Par 4 scoring (+23). The Cardinal was third with 45 birdies and fourth with 173 pars over the 54-hole event.
Fighting Illini Invitational (Olympia Fields Country Club, par 70)
|Name||Round 1||Round 2||Round 3||Total|
|1. Stanford||270 (-10)||281 (+1)||280 (E)||831 (-9)|
|1. Michael Thorbjornsen||67 (-3)||70 (E)||66 (-4)||203 (-7)|
|T6. Karl Vilips||65 (-5)||71 (+1)||71 (+1)||207 (-3)|
|T9. Ethan Ng||70 (E)||69 (-1)||71 (+1)||210 (E)|
|T12. Barclay Brown||68 (-2)||71 (+1)||72 (+2)||211 (+1)|
|75. Dean Greyserman||77 (+7)||80 (+10)||76 (+6)||233 (+23)|