#16 Wesleyan Golf Finishes in 14th Place at Nationals

L-R: Luke Thornton, Grady Anderson, Mariano Silvestri, Dustin Wood, Frankie Schmitt;
photo courtesy Gregg Ripke
L-R: Luke Thornton, Grady Anderson, Mariano Silvestri, Dustin Wood, Frankie Schmitt; photo courtesy Gregg Ripke
NICHOLASVILLEKy. -- The 16th ranked NC Wesleyan College Golf Team finished their final round of the 2019 NCAA Div. III National Championships on Friday shooting an 18-over 306 to finish in 14th place. The tournament was held at Keene Trace Golf Club in the foothills of Central Kentucky, hosted by Transylvania University.
The Bishops, who qualified for the tournament as an at-large selection after coming in third at the USA South Conference meet, sat in 22nd place after a first round 312 on Tuesday afternoon. NC Wesleyan then improved by 8 strokes to shoot a 304 as a team, 10th-best round of the day on the more difficult Champion Trace course, in Wednesday morning's second round to make the cut by sitting in 15th place. It was the first made cut at the national championship in school history for the Battling Bishops.
Wesleyan then shot a 22-over 310 in the third round on Thursday and with their 306 on Friday, they totaled a 4-day score of 80-over 1232, finishing about 20 strokes shy of the top 10. Illinois Wesleyan held off USA South foe Huntingdon by 3 strokes to win the team title at 22-over par.
The Bishops were led on the week by two-time Conference Rookie of the Week, freshman Frankie Schmitt as he finished in a tie for 28th place with a 13-over 301 with his 6-over 78 in the final round. Schmitt previously shot rounds of 75, 73 and 75 on the week as his 1 over 73 in the second round standing as the best Bishop round of the week.
All-South Region senior, #39 Mariano Silvestri finished right behind Schmitt in 32nd place with a 4 day score of 14-over 302. Silvestri shot a 4-over 76 on Friday, including 4 birdies, to go with his previous rounds of 74, 77, and 75. Fellow All-South Region Senior, #30 Grady Anderson, then fired the best round of day 4 for the Bishops scoring 3 birdies on the day to shoot a 2-over 74 on Friday to move up into a tie for 70th overall with his 4-day total score of 25-over 313 (78-76-85-74).
Junior Luke Thornton then finished in 83rd place with his 6-over 78 on Friday, his third consecutive 78 on the week to finish with a 4-day total of 31-over 319 while fellow junior Dustin Wood placed 94th on the week with a 47-over 335. He shot a 10-over 82 on Friday.