Jayhawks Open Spring Season at Hawaii-Hilo Invitational
Jan. 30, 2009
LAWRENCE, Kan. –
The Kansas men’s golf team kicks off the 2009 spring season Feb. 4-6 at the Hawaii-Hilo Invitational in Kamuela, Hawaii. The Jayhawks, who recorded top-10 finishes in all four of their fall starts, have played in this event since 2001.
The host course has been shifted to the 6,913 yard, par-72 Mauna Lani North Course. The host course in previous years was the Waikoloa Golf Club.
“We are very excited to get the season going,” said head coach Kit Grove. “With our new building the guys have been able to get far more work in then they have in years past and in theory I hope that means that we should play better golf this week.”
Grove will once again turn to the starting-five that he utilized during every fall event. The squad will include seniors Walt Koelbel and Andrew Storm, sophomore Nate Barbee and freshmen Ian Anson and Blake Giroux.
Barbee’s best career round of 67 came at the 2008 Hawaii-Hilo Invitational. Koelbel the only other Jayhawk who has competed in the event, finished tied for 83rd in 2008.
The field will include six teams ranked in the Golfweek Top-20, including No. 2 ranked USC. The defending champion of the event, Stanford, is currently ranked fifth by Golfweek.
“This is definitely the toughest field that we will face all year,” said Grove. “With the venue change to a tougher course and an already stacked field, this week will be a big challenge for us.”
Past champions of the prestigious event include current PGA Tour players Anthony Kim, Troy Matteson, Matt Kuchar and Notah Begay III.
The 54-hole event will feature a single round Feb.4-6 beginning with a 12:30 HST shotgun on Wednesday.
Check back to kuathletics.com for a complete recap and result of the Jayhawks’ first spring event.