MERCYHURST ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS
By John Manley
Daniel Brennan of Bethune-Cookman University won the Towson Spring Invitational at Prospect Bay Country Club in Grasonville, Md. The junior from Shannon, Co. Clare combined rounds of 69 and 73 to stave off three braying rivals by a stroke. He finished two strokes under par for the event, which drew a field of 120 golfers.
“I could not be happier for Danny and the team,” said Tony O’Neal, Bethune’s interim head coach. “[He] has worked hard over the course of the winter off-season and now it is showing in the spring.”
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The Wildcats finished fourth in the team scramble, which saw Elon come out on top, seven strokes better than Brennan and company.
Consecutive rounds of 2-under-par 70 boosted Brian Murtagh of Cardinal Stritch University into joint-fourth place at the William Woods Invitational at Tanglewood Golf Course in Fulton, Mo. Murtagh, a junior from Galway, fell three strokes shy of Jack Clarkson of William Woods University for low honors.
Wake Forest junior Paul McBride got a share of 10th place in the Augusta Invitational at Forest Hills Golf Club in Augusta, Ga. The Malahide, Dublin man posted rounds of 70, 72 and 69, which amounted to five strokes under par and six strokes off the winning number belonging to Illinois’ Dylan Meyer. Wake missed the team crown by four strokes to Central Florida.
Clayton State’s Keith Egan was in with a chance after two rounds of the UNA Spring Preview at RTJ at the Shoals in Muscles Shoals, Ala. The senior from Newbridge, Co. Kildare was only three shots off the lead with one round to play, but he came in with 75 to fall nine strokes off the winning score, posted by Shea Silvester of Lee University. Egan settled for a tie at 10th place. Meanwhile, John Bolger of Young Harris College never got untracked here. The freshman from Gorey, Co. Wexford finished joint-81st at 241 (78-80-83).
A second-round 69 provided Conor Sutton with some redemption. The Union College (Ky.) junior from Dublin opened with 77 in the Tusculum Invitational at Link Hills in Greeneville, Tenn. Put together, his 4-over-par 146, eight strokes off the low number, entitled him to a share of 15th place.
Belmont Abbey sophomore John Molyneaux wriggled into the top 20 at the Bearcat Golf Classic at Greenwood Country Club in Greenwood, S.C. The Dubliner shot 6-over-par 222 (79-70-73) to come up with a slice of 19th place. Medalist Michael Pospisil of Lander shot 207.
Sam Sweeney of McMurry University took 22nd place in the Texas Cup at Twin Creeks Golf Club in Allen, Tex. The Drogheda junior posted rounds of 75 and 81 amidst rough conditions to finish 12 strokes over par and seven behind medalist Alden Fortner of Mary Hardin-Baylor. Fifty-eight collegians teed off here.
A first-round 68 had Charlotte’s Conor Purcell in fifth place, three strokes off the lead in the Hoosier Classic at Indiana University’s Golf Course in Bloomington. But the freshman from Malahide, Dublin cratered over the next two rounds, limping in with scores of 76 and 75. That dropped him into joint-32nd place. Among those passing on the way up were Toledo’s Stephen Watts, whose rounds of 73, 72 and 72 were good for a share of 23rd place. At 4-over-par 217, the junior from Larne, Co. Antrim stood 11 strokes off the winning number recorded by Valparaiso’s Peter Webb. Despite Purcell’s late mishaps, Charlotte placed three golfers inside the top five to easily claim the team title.
Rounds of 75 and 81 consigned Northern Michigan’s Chris Black to a share of 49th place in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Spring Invitational at the University Club of Kentucky in Lexington. Black is a freshman from Lisburn, Co. Antrim.
Iona’s Oisin Devereux tied for 39th place in The Manor Intercollegiate at The Manor Golf Club in Farmville, Va. Devereux, a freshman from Dublin, posted rounds of 78, 76 and 73, which placed him 11 strokes over par and 14 off the duo with the low number. Also in the field was Fairleigh Dickinson’s Patrick Brennan, a freshman from Belfast, who shot rounds of 81, 81 and 78, which left him joint-75th in the 90-man scramble.
Olivia Mehaffey of Arizona State got fifth place in the Anuenue Spring Break Classic at The Bay Course in Kapalua, Hi. The Belfast freshman was tied for second place after rounds of 72 and 70, nine strokes off UCLA’s Lilla Vu, who extended her lead to nine strokes with one round to play. That proved a bridge too far for Mehaffey, who closed with 73, and the rest of the field as Vu cruised to a seven-stroke victory.
Kansas State’s Chloe Weir just missed a top-10 placing in the John Kirk/Panther Intercollegiate at Eagle’s Landing Country Club in Stockbridge, Ga. The Belfast sophomore hung up rounds of 75, 75 and 73, which put her seven strokes over par for the event and was good for 11th place. She finished 11 strokes off the winning pace established by Eastern Kentucky’s Elsa Moberly.
TRACK & FIELD
Indiana State’s Jaime Murtagh took second place in the men’s high jump at the Big Blue Classic in Charleston, Ill. Murtagh, a junior from Ashbourne, Co. Meath, cleared 2.03 meters only to fail at the next peg up, 2.09 meters, as did the winner, Anthony McRoberts of Illinois State. The latter, however, suffered no misses at 1.98, whereas Murtagh cleared the bar on his second try there, thus, clearing McRoberts’ path to victory.
Villanova’s Siofra Cleirigh Buttner placed third in the women’s 800 meters at the Florida Relays in Gainesville. The junior from Dublin came in at the 2:03.07 mark, best for a collegian, but behind two post-college runners. Marilyn Okoro won the race in 2:02.50.
Eastern Kentucky’s Megan Kiely placed fourth in the women’s 400 hurdles at the Oliver Nikoloff Invitational in Cincinnati. Kiely, a senior from Dunhill, Co. Waterford, cleared her path in 1:06.85 in a race won by Butler’s Allie Vogeler in 1:02.28.
Mercyhurst’s Conor McCooey, a junior from Dublin picked up the 100th victory of his collegiate career (combining singles and doubles play) on Friday when the Lakers took a road match, 7-2, from Fairmont State. He began with an 8-6 win at third doubles alongside Joaquin Aguilera over Micah Hornak and Dillon Early. Later, McCooey met up again with Early at fifth singles and got the victory, 6-2, 3-6, 1-0 (10-7). Younger brother Cormac manned third singles for Mercyhurst and pulled out a three-set victory over Gui Pichane, 6-4, 1-6, 6-4. He, too, won his doubles match with Nenad Terzic, 8-2, over Pichane and Tom Liddy.
Stetson’s Coilin MacNamara split his matches in the Hatters’ victories last week, first over Lipscomb, 4-2, on Thursday and then Kennesaw State, 4-3, on Saturday. The Dublin sophomore, playing fifth singles, needed three sets to dispose of Lipscomb’s Jorge Ortegon, 6-4, 4-6, 6-2. He again went the limit against Kennesaw’s Jake Bouchillon, winning the first set, 6-4, before dropping the next two by similar scores.
Winning the doubles point enabled Notre Dame to depart Blacksburg, Va. with a 4-3 win over Virginia Tech. Jane Fennelly, a senior from Rathmines, Dublin, teamed with Zoe Spence for a 7-5 win over Tech’s Nancy Ghanem and Sansitha Nandakumar at third doubles.
Lucy Octave helped Utah State shut out Colorado State, 7-0, in Logan, Utah on Sunday. The freshman from Donaghadee, Co. Down recovered from a first-set defeat to rally and down Sandra Keta, 6-7 (4-7), 6-1, 6-2, at fourth singles.
Emily Beatty and her Montevallo teammates had a busy week, playing four matches in seven days. They began with an 8-1 romp over Tuskegee, in which Beatty, a sophomore from Moria, Co. Down took care of Monica Thomas, 6-1, 6-2. The Falcons were then edged, 5-4, by Young Harris on Friday, although Beatty handled Elin Rundcrantz, 6-3, 6-0. Montevallo then got a 5-4 win on Saturday over Lander, with Beatty dispatching Ivanka Mocic, 6-2, 6-3. The weekend concluded on a down note, when the Falcons lost, 7-2, to North Georgia on Sunday. Beatty lost, 6-4, 6-3, to Felicia Baratta. Beatty was slotted at second singles for all her matches.