By: Jordan Kendall, Sports Editor
The Tigers opened the spring season in Florida at the Loyola Intercollegiate Tournament. Towson finished in 12th place out of 15 schools.
“I think we have a few things we need to clean up to compete at the level we want to compete at,” head coach Mike Larkin said. “But definitely a bunch of positives with it being our first event of the spring. Coming out of winter it’s tough sometimes to get into a rhythm, that’s what we faced but there were a lot of good things we can build on.”
The Tigers started slow, shooting 305 in the first round but improved in round two by ten strokes. Two of the top 50 players after day one were from Towson, led by freshman Jeremy Summerson. He finished tied for 33rd overall on Monday with a three-over 145.
“First round coming out we had some rust,” Larkin said. “Most of the guys haven’t teed it up in a tournament since our tournament in October. To go a few months without a tournament, get that adrenaline again I think that’s why our first round scores were higher.”
The trio of junior Jackson Courtney, freshman Brad Riley, and sophomore Justin Griffith all improved their scores in round two. Courtney and Griffith improved by seven strokes while Riley improved by five.
On Tuesday, Griffith had a career low score with a two-under 70. He ended the day with five birdies and ten pars and improved his score from the first round by 12 strokes.
“It’s uncharacteristic for him to shoot in the 80s, it hasn’t happened very frequently,” Larkin said. “Something we talked about is one of his goals is to shoot more of those under par rounds. He battles till the end, he missed a short putt on the 17th hole, he came off frustrated and I reminded it’s still a good round and it’s still a career low.”
Riley and Courtney each finished with a two-over 74 and both shot a birdie on the 13th and 14th holes.
Overall, Summerson finished the event with a team-low 222 strokes with Courtney one stroke ahead. Griffith and Riley finished with 227 while junior Derek Gold had 239 strokes.
“We have to work on our short game,” Larkin said. “I think that’s where the guys were most rusty, they all know it. That’s what we’ll be working on here in practice and over break in North Carolina. I’m sure the short game will get focus so we’ll be more sharp in Furman and ready to make the move up the leaderboard.”
The Tigers will compete at the Furman Tournament starting on Friday, March 27. The Tournament in Greenville, South Carolina lasts until Sunday, March 29.
“It’s a new one, haven’t seen who’s in the field yet so not entirely sure what to expect for results,” Larkin said. “No matter what the field looks like I expect our guys to be sharper.”