U of I Release:
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – No. 8 Illinois carded the best scores in both the first and second rounds of the Boilermaker Invitational on Saturday and holds a five-stroke lead over Louisville after 36 holes at the par-72, 7,259-yard Kampen Course. The Illini sit at 5-over-par 581 (291-290), while the Cardinals are 10-over after rounds of 295 and 291.
Three Illinois players are in the top 12 and all five scoring members of the Orange and Blue stand in the top 20 after the tournament’s first day, with fifth-year senior Jonathan Hauter leading the charge in a tie for fifth place at even par. Sophomore Charlie Danielson is tied for 10th at +1, sophomore Thomas Detry is tied for 12th at +2, junior Brian Campbell is tied for 16th at +3 and sophomore David Kim is tied for 20th at +4. Junior Alex Burge, who is competing as an individual, is tied for 29th at +5 after rounds of 76-73.
“It was a solid day from top to bottom,” Illinois head coach Mike Small said. “When you throw out a 74 and a 75 on this golf course, that’s a strong day overall. In a perfect world, you’d like to have one or two guys shoot an eraser score, but for the most part it was a good day. Everybody had some adversity that they persevered through, which was great. We’ve been working on staying in the moment and I thought we did better with that today.
“The way you can get to this golf course is you have to play the par-5s better than we did. There are spots you have to pick apart and some you have to ride through. We did OK with some of the tougher par-4s, but we still had too many double-bogeys today.”
Detry and Campbell led the way in the day’s first round, firing even-par 72s. Detry scrambled through some difficulties, carding a pair of double-bogeys and a bogey in the opening round but offsetting them with an eagle on the par-5 10th and three birdies. Campbell stumbled out of the gate with three consecutive bogeys and sat +4 through nine holes. But he rallied with five birdies on his last nine holes, including at the par-4 1st and par-3 2nd, his two finishing holes after starting on No. 3.
Kim played a solid first round, recovering after a birdie on his third hole, the par-5 4th, to make eight consecutive pars. He got back to even with a birdie on the par-3 13th but went back above par with bogeys on Nos. 15 and 17. He scratched out a birdie at the par-4 1st, his final hole, to post a 73.
Hauter stood at 1-under-par after 13 holes of his first round – counting three birdies against a pair of bogeys – but made bogey on three of his final five holes to finish with a 2-over 74. Danielson birdied the par-4 7th to get to -1 in his first round, but bogeys on the next two holes left him at +1 at the turn. A bogey on the par-4 14th was the only mark on his back nine as he ended with a 74.
In round two, Hauter rebounded started hot with birdies on Nos. 4 and 6, his second and fourth holes. He dropped a shot on the par-4 12th but recovered nicely with birdies on Nos. 13 and 15 to get to -3 for his round. He made bogey at the par-5 16th and finished with four straight pars for a 2-under-par 70, the Illini’s best score of the afternoon round. Danielson was much stronger early in the second round, birdying the par-5 4th and No. 7 to turn at -2. He added another at the par-5 10th to get as deep as 3-under, but bogeys at No. 14 and the par-4 18th left him with a 1-under 71. Detry managed two birdies – at the par-5 4th and the par-4 18th, but carded four bogeys for his 74.
Campbell was up-and-down again in his second round, starting double-bogey-birdie-bogey-birdie before getting back to even-par with a birdie at the par-4 9th. But a bogey on 10 and a double-bogey on the par-4 12th left him and +3 and that’s where he finished. Kim was at +1 through his first 10 holes with two bogeys against one birdie, but a double-bogey at the par-4 12th left him at +3 and that’s where he finished after seven consecutive pars to end his round.
“We need to play the par-5s better and we need a couple guys to get those eraser scores to pick everybody else up. A five-shot lead is very similar to a tie in college golf – it just isn’t much of a cushion. There are a lot of teams that are close together on the leaderboard, so we need to get out early and eliminate the unforced errors that we had today.”
The Illini tee off Sunday’s final round at 7:45 a.m. CT alongside Louisville and UCLA in a shotgun start off holes 1-3. Illinois will be in search of its fourth tournament title this season and second this spring.