The Nebraska men’s golf team recorded seven top-10 finishes in 2013-14, as eight Huskers made at least three tournament appearances.
Junior Ross Dickson was the lone Husker to start every tournament, and managed a 74.56 stroke average in 34 rounds. He led Nebraska on four occasions and earned two top-20 finishes.
As a team, the Huskers compiled a 295.91 stroke average in 11 stroke-play appearances. NU showed successive improvement over each round, averaging 294.45 strokes in the third round. In the first round, Nebraska posted a 297.36 average, while producing a 296.00 average in the second round.
Junior Calvin Freeman didn’t compete in the first tournament of the season, but teed it up for the remainder of the 2013-14 campaign, compiling a 74.90 stroke average in 31 rounds.
Senior Matt Record sat out of two events in the fall, but led NU in four of its six spring tournaments. He earned a 74.00 stroke average and collected a team-leading three top-20 finishes.
Newcomers Justin Jennings and Mike Siwa each competed in seven tournaments, respectively. Jennings, a freshman, saw the majority of his playing time in the fall, and managed a 76.06 stroke average in 18 rounds. Siwa, a senior from Omaha, Neb., also played in 18 rounds, compiling a 76.39 stroke average in the process.
Kolton Lapa, Josh Reinertson and Manuel Lavin also made multiple showings for the Huskers during the 2013-14 season. Lapa played in every tournament during the fall season with a 74.73 average. Reinertson competed in four spring tournaments and earned a 73.85 average. Lavin teed it up in each of the last three events of the season, producing a 78.70 average in the process.
For the first time since 2007, the Huskers started the season on the road as NU traveled to Columbia, Mo., for the NCAA Columbia Regional Preview, Sept. 16-17. Dickson and Lapa each tied for 22nd at 6-over-par 222 to lead Nebraska at The Club at Old Hawthorne. The Huskers finished 10th as a team, shooting 891 over three rounds. Redshirt freshman Nathan Wong made his only appearance of the season and tied for 33rd at 224.
In their next showing, the Huskers collected a seventh-place finish at the Mark Simpson Colorado Invitational, Sept. 23-24. Lapa tied for 17th to pace Nebraska at Colorado National Golf Club. After opening with 79, he posted 2-under-par 70 in the second round before finishing with 74. Freeman, making his first start at Nebraska, tied for 27th at 225.
Two weeks later, Nebraska headed to Akron, Ohio for the Firestone Invitational, where the Huskers tied for 10th at 887. After carding an opening-round 307, NU posted 293 in the second round before firing 287 in the final round. Dickson tied for 13th individually, shooting a second-round 69 at Firestone Country Club. Record tied for 32nd (222) and Lapa tied for 37th (223).
The Huskers also improved their score in each round at the Herb Wimberly Intercollegiate, Oct. 21-22, at NMSU Golf Course in Las Cruces, N.M. NU managed 305 in the first round before notching scores of 295 and 289 over the final two rounds. Dickson and Freeman each tied for 26th, with Freeman firing 69 in the final round. Jennings tied for 31st at 222.
Three days later, Nebraska closed the fall with its best finish of the 2013 season, earning a sixth-place result at the Price’s Give ‘Em Five Invitational. The Huskers broke 300 in all three rounds en route to a 1-over-par 865 total at Butterfield Trail Golf Club. Jennings fired 69 in the second round to earn his best finish of the season, a tie for 22nd. Lapa also tied for 22nd with a 217 total, while Dickson and Freeman each tied for 34th at 220.
The Huskers opened the spring season in Bradenton, Fla., at the Big Ten Match Play Championship, Feb. 14-15. NU suffered a narrow 3-2-0 loss to No. 5 seed Ohio State in the first round, with Jennings and Siwa collecting victories. Freeman battled the Buckeyes’ Frederik Hammer to the 18th hole before falling by a 2-Up margin. Nebraska lost its two consolation matches to Wisconsin and Penn State, but Dickson managed a win against the Badgers, while Reinertson halved his match against the Nittany Lions.
Record led the Huskers in their next outing with a tie for 31st at the Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate, Feb. 21-23 in Palm Desert, Calif. NU broke 300 in all three rounds en route to an 881 total that earned an 18th-place finish. Siwa collected a tie for 62nd (221), while Dickson and Freeman each tied for 79th (225) at The Classic Club.
Nebraska opened March at the Cleveland Golf Palmetto Intercollegiate, where the Huskers tied for 11th. Dickson fired an opening-round 70 to post a tie for 28th and lead the Huskers at the Palmetto Golf Club in Aiken, S.C. Record tied for 47th with a 225 total.
At the Desert Shootout, the Huskers fired their season-best score of 279 in the final round, and compiled an 846 total for the tournament that was also a season low. Nebraska posted rounds of 282 and 285 over the first two rounds at Palm Valley Golf Course to finish sixth. Record shot three subpar rounds (70-69-69) for an 8-under-par 208 total that earned him a 13th-place finish. Freeman (T-19th), Reinertson (T-29th) and Dickson (T-34th) also posted subpar scores for the tournament.
Reinertson led the Huskers in their next showing to a second consecutive sixth-place finish with his tie for 16th at the Hawkeye Invitational. During the rainy final round, Freeman led the 65-player field with 4-under-par 68 at Finkbine Golf Course. He led Nebraska’s surge over the final 18 holes as the Huskers posted 288, the third-best score for the day among the 12-team field. Freeman tied for 26th (224), while Dickson tied for 42nd (229) and Record tied for 47th (230).
Nebraska earned its best finish of the season the following week with a second-place showing at the Oak Hill Intercollegiate, April 21-22. Four Huskers collected top-10 finishes at Oak Hill Country Club, site of the 2013 PGA Championship. Record finished third (213), Reinertson took fifth (217), Dickson tied for seventh (221) and Freeman tied for ninth to propel NU to an 870 total. The Huskers used bookend 289s to finish four strokes behind team champion Notre Dame. NU starter Lavin (T-19th) and individuals Siwa (18th) and Ryan Grassel (T-32nd) all earned their best finishes of the season, respectively.
Record tied for 20th at the Big Ten Championships, May 2-4, at the Pete Dye Golf Course at French Lick Resort to lead Nebraska to an 11th-place team finish. The Huskers carded their best score in the final round with 294, the fourth-best score by a team on the last day. Freeman tied for 31st (306), Reinertson finished 44th (309), Dickson tied for 46th (312) and Lavin finished 59th (322).