After the first day of the McDaniel Spring Invitational on Saturday, March 13, the men’s golf team appeared to be a shadow of the team that’s been on the cusp of the nation’s top 25 for weeks as it limped and struggled to overpower mediocre adversaries. Sophomore Nick Palladino, a favorite to win individually going into the tournament, sat in a disappointing 13th place by shooting seven over par — well off Skidmore College’s Brett Augenstein, whose first day total of 72 shots was one off par.
The rest of UR’s seasoned corps which includes junior Marc Youngentob (tied with Palladino for 13th place), seniors Michael Chudacoff (tied for 42nd) and senior David Wien (tied for 49th) teamed with sophomore Will Mallia (tied for 75th) to complete the team’s scoring. The Yellowjackets, sitting in eighth place by Saturday’s conclusion, left them behind many lesser teams — teams the yellow and blue didn’t expect to be next to on the scoring sheet (let alone trailing) after the first day.
It was no surprise, then, that the ’Jackets came back with a vengeance the following day.
Though they started weak, they emerged from the middle of the pack to a more respectable fourth place team finish. Palladino led the second day charge, managing six birdies while firing a 72 to finish with 150 strokes and climbing the individual rankings to claim a share of third place. Chudacoff also showed drastic improvement, slicing six strokes off his Saturday total by shooting a 76 on Sunday (158 total, 24th individually). Youngentob tied with Chudacoff by shooting an 80 on day two.
Wien (161, 37th overall) and Mallia (169, tied for 69th) rounded out UR’s scoring. The Yellowjackets finished only behind nationally 17th-ranked Skidmore College, 13th-ranked St. John Fisher College and unranked Swarthmore College.
The ’Jackets will return to the green on Sunday, April 8 when they take part in the Mid-Atlantic Regional Invitational in Hershey, Pa. — a competition they won easily last year.
Bernstein is a member of the class of 2014.