Boulder City, Nev. -- North Dakota junior Jeremy Kirk put together the best tournament of his collegiate career at the 2018 Big Sky Championship and capped it with a career-best 72 (E) to finish tied for 12th. Kirk made five birdies on the Boulder Creek Golf Club and was in red figures for most of the day before finishing the 54-hole tournament with a 221 total (+5). That was six strokes better than the 227 (+11) he put together on the same course at the 2016 league championship.
"Jeremy had a great weekend and it was nice to see him finish out the season on a high note," UND head coach Matt Stricker said. "It was also nice to Jack have a strong finish to his weekend with his best score. These guys were a lot of fun to work with since I came on board in January and appreciate all the hard work they put in for this program."
Senior Jack McClintock wrapped up his collegiate career with his best round of the tournament, carding a 74 (+2) to finish at 231 (+15) and in 31st place. Kirk and McClintock helped the Fighting Hawks card a second-consecutive 309 (+21) as a team and finish at 935 (+71).
Sophomore Patrick Traynor shot in the 70's for the second time this weekend, posting a 79 (+7) to finish third amongst the Fighting Hawks and tie for 35th. Traynor finished at 239 (+23), which was his best showing during an injury-shortened season. Junior Jordan Smith shot his second 84 (+12), sandwiching those with a 76 (+4) on Saturday to finish at 244 (+28). Junior Ryan Riihinen closed out his tournament with an 85 (+13).
Northern Colorado captured its first Big Sky title with a three-stroke victory over Southern Utah. The Bears closed with a 284 to shoot 854 and hold off the Thunderbirds, who posted the low round of the day (282; -2) to finish at 857 (-7).
The race for medalist honors provided some drama as Southern Utah's Fidel Conception birdied the 18th hole to force a playoff with UNC's Andrew Romano. Both players finished with 208 (-8) totals, but Roman would birdie the first playoff hole to claim the individual title. He held a three-stroke lead on Conception, who shot a final-round 68 (-3), entering the day.
2018 Big Sky Championship (Final Results)
|1.||Northern Colorado||286-284-284 = 854 (-10)|
|2.||Southern Utah||285-290-282 = 857 (-7)|
|3.||Idaho||299-294-285 = 878 (+14)|
|4.||Weber State||295-290-299 = 884 (+20)|
|5.||Sacramento State||297-294-296 = 887 (+23)|
|6.||Binghamton||309-297-287 = 893 (+29)|
|7.||Hartford||303-305-300 = 908 (+44)|
|8.||North Dakota||317-309-309 = 935 (+71)|
UND Individuals (Final Results)
|t12.||Jeremy Kirk||74-75-72 = 221 (+5)|
|31.||Jack McClintock||80-77-74 = 231 (+15)|
|t35.||Patrick Traynor||79-81-79 = 239 (+23)|
|39.||Jordan Smith||84-76-84 = 244 (+28)|
|40.||Ryan Riihinen||97-81-85 = 263 (+47)|
-- UND --