Andrew Walker

Ball State University didn't quite show the consistency this weekend that coach Mike Fleck would have liked, but the Cardinals still played well enough to finish in second place out of 19 teams in the Hoosier Invitational hosted by Indiana University.

"We've made some progress," Fleck said. "To finish where we did in this field is really what I expected. It's nice to kind of get it going in a nice direction now."

Ball State shot an 874 (+22) in the three-round, two-day tournament to place second but was 36 strokes behind host Indiana, which won the invite with a score of 838 (-14).

Fleck said all he was looking for was improvement after his team had sputtered a bit in its first two tournaments of the spring season. The Cardinals finished 12th out of 15 teams in the Pinehurst Intercollegiate in North Carolina on March 14 and followed that up last weekend by finishing eighth out of 15 teams in their own Cardinal Collegiate in Jasper, Ind.

"With consistency, we did a little bit better job this weekend," Fleck said. "But it's still an issue that we need to address."

Ball State's top golfer, junior Eric Steger, was the Cardinals' top individual performer in Bloomington. He shot a 68 in the opening round leading to a tie for seventh place with a 216 (+3).

Steger was playing for the first time since being disqualified last weekend for turning in an incorrect scorecard in the first round.

"Steger's our best player, and with that comes the expectation and the role of being just that," Fleck said. "Eric's going to be fine."

Ball State's Anthony Novak and Eric Skillman tied for 21st individually with 221 (+8).

Indiana's Chase Wright, a Delta High School graduate, claimed medalist honors by shooting a 204 (-9), including a third-round 66.

The Cardinals return to action next Monday for the two-day Missouri Intercollegiate in Columbia, Mo.