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MSU, Ferris State tie for 1st at Fossum Invite

April 25, 2010

Senior Jack Newman hits a tee shot during the 2010 Fossum Invitational on Sunday at Forest Akers West Golf Course.

It’s rare to have ties in team golf at the college level.

With a team’s combined stroke total usually exceeding 800 strokes, it’s odd to see identical scores posted by multiple teams.

But at the 42nd Fossum Invitational, every shot mattered and the tournament came down to the wire.

The MSU men’s golf team and Ferris State both posted scores of 879, resulting in a shared championship Sunday at Forest Akers West Golf Course. Both teams were 15-over to finish the 54-hole, seven-team tournament.

“It’s amazing that it all came down to one stroke,” MSU head coach Sam Puryear said. “If you look on the board, you are looking at 800 strokes and it all comes down to one. It’s pretty awesome.”

In an attempt to break the tie, the teams played the par-4 18th hole as a playoff. But, again, both teams posted identical scores. With threatening weather looming in the distance, the teams agreed to each take their share of the title and call it a day.

Although the Spartans were happy to finish on top, they felt they might have let the tournament slip away. Entering the final round, the Spartans held a three-shot lead over the field.

“Tying and having a playoff is fun for everybody to watch,” said senior Jack Newman, who finished second individually, with a 2-under three-round score of 214. “But I don’t think we played too well, and I don’t know if Ferris State played too well. It was frustrating overall.”

South Carolina Upstate senior Josh Gallman won the individual title, edging out Newman by four strokes.

Of the Spartans’ five-man team this weekend, four were underclassmen.

Freshmen James Ross and Matthew Moseley finished in a tie for fifth place individually with a 4-over score of 220.

The wet and windy conditions caused Sunday’s round to be challenging for the majority of the field. But Ross — a Scotland native — said he was comfortable playing in the tricky conditions.

“It was slightly windy, but I’m used to that,” Ross said. “Coming from Scotland, this isn’t bad at all for me. But I’m sure a lot of the other guys were kind of struggling with it.”

The Fossum Invitational is the longest running collegiate golf tournament in the nation. It also served as MSU’s only home tournament of the season.

The Spartans are hoping to use the co-championship as a stepping stone as they travel to Minnesota to compete in the Big Ten Championships this weekend.

“This tournament is something we can build off,” Newman said. “Hopefully we can build off this win here and go into next week and have some fun.”

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