BYU men’s golf team finishes season after making NCAA Division I Regional

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The BYU men’s golf team’s season saw its highs as the Cougars placed in the top three for six of its 13 matches and won the West Coast Conference Championship for the second time in program history. 

BYU Coach Bruce Brockbank, who has been at the school since 1992, led BYU to five tournament wins this season. Overall, the Cougars have won 44 tournaments under Brockbank. 

The BYU men’s golf team consisted of four freshmen and three sophomores this season, and the Cougars will only lose one senior, Zach Pritchard, before next year.

Rhett Rasmussen and Peter Kuest, two freshmen on the team, were named to the All-WCC First Team this year. Rasmussen was named WCC Freshman of the Year, while Kuest won the WCC Championship individual title.

BYU junior Patrick Fishburn was also on the All-WCC First Team and was named WCC Player of the Year.  

Mark Philbrick
Patrick Fishburn claims All-Conference Honors for the second year in a row. (Mark Philbrick)

The Cougars started the season with a strong showing at the Olympic Intercollegiate Championship. All five players finished in the top 20, claiming a first place victory for BYU with an overall score of 859.

The Alister MacKenzie Invitational was a hard tournament for the Cougars. Coming in 10th place was a disappointment after playing so well in the first three tournaments of the season.

Fishburn had the best score of the team, tying for sixth place with a score of 203 (-10).

“We started the event really well,” Brockbank said after the tournament. “The first round was exceptional, but we couldn’t handle the speed of the greens on the last two very well. I really like this group and know they will bounce back.”

The Pacific Invitational in Stockton, CA, was the bounce back tournament win the Cougars were looking for.

They finished the tournament with a total score of 834 (-18), led by Fishburn, who shot nine-under-par and claimed his first individual title of the season.

“Patrick played great today,” Brockbank said after the tournament. “He’s been so close so many times, and it’s nice for him to finally get an individual win.”

The next five tournaments were difficult for the Cougars, as the highest finish for the team was a fourth place showing at the John Burns Invitational in Lihue, Hawaii.

Although BYU placed eighth in The Goodwin tournament, Rasmussen took first place individually. Rasmussen scored a 64, which was the lowest by any competitor in The Goodwin and the best scoring round for all the Cougars this season.

The PING Cougar Classic and the 2017 West Coast Conference Championship were both held in Provo. The team played well, winning both tournaments.

Fishburn and Spencer Dunaway both recorded top-3 finishes in the PING Cougars Classic.

“It was great to see the guys step up and do what they did on the back nine to pull away. It was just so impressive,” Brockbank said. “That (third) round that Spencer Dunaway shot was off the charts. To be where we have been the last six tournaments and see what happened today, I couldn’t be more excited for this team.”

Kuest had a first-place individual finish in the WCC Championship, helping BYU claim its second WCC title.

BYU finished the championship at -24, the second-best team score in WCC Championship history.

The Cougars finished off the season representing the WCC in the NCAA Division I Regional in Stanford, CA. With a final score of +12, BYU claimed eighth place. CJ Lee had the best individual performance for the Cougars, tying for 22nd place.

With a final score of +12, BYU claimed eighth place, missing out on advancing to the NCAA Championships by nine strokes.

BYU will see nine of its 10 players return next fall, looking to build upon this season’s success.

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