Ranieri ties for 14th as rest of Cardinals gain valuable lesson in Purdue Fall Invitational

<p>Junior Joey Ranieri tees off Oct. 1, 2018. Ranieri earned the Mid-American Conference Freshman of the Year Award in 2019. <strong>Jeff Harwell, Photo Provided</strong></p>

Junior Joey Ranieri tees off Oct. 1, 2018. Ranieri earned the Mid-American Conference Freshman of the Year Award in 2019. Jeff Harwell, Photo Provided

Ball State Men’s Golf placed 12th out of 12 teams in the Purdue Fall Invitational Oct. 11-12. The Cardinals finished with a final score of 909 (+45 over par).

With four freshmen in the five-man lineup, head coach Mike Fleck hopes his younger players benefit from the outing. Even though the scorecard did not fall in their favor, Fleck believes there are things to takeaway for the Cardinals. 

“I just hope they continue to learn as they get this experience,” Fleck said. “We've had a rough couple of weeks and obviously, we did not play well. I just hope they continue to learn and grow, and honestly understand that everybody in college golf is good, including them. We just have to be more competitive at the end of the day, when we go out there and represent Ball State.”

Due to weather concerns, the second round, originally scheduled for the first day, was pushed back to the second day.

The Cardinals earned their best score on par threes, where they shot a 3.25 average. Their final score on par threes was +15. Among individuals, senior Joey Ranieri tied for 14th with a score of 216. He shot 72 in each of the three rounds. Raineri shared a team-high eight birdies, and tied for second in pars (39). 

“He is carrying the load right now,” Fleck said. “He's our number one guy. He's been consistent, another top 15 finish for him. He didn't have his A game this week and he kind of showed that during a couple of the rounds, but he still fought like crazy and competed. It's just a testament to the type of competitor he is, and then the mentality he has while he's out there competing.”

Junior Joey Ranieri hits the ball Oct. 1, 2018. Ranieri was ranked second on the team with a 73.00 stroke average in 2019. Jeff Harwell, Photo Provided

Redshirt freshman Griffin Hare tied for 57th with a final score of 229. He shot a 74 in the second round, which proved to be his best score of the weekend. Redshirt freshman Ali Khan tied for 68th, with his best performance in the first round, where he shot 76.

Freshman Colin Nasser placed 71st (235), while freshman Kash Bellar finished 72nd (236). Nasser finished second on the Cardinals in pars (34), while Bellar joined Raineri in totaling eight birdies.

“We got to be better at avoiding double bogeys and more on the scorecard,” Fleck said. “Our avoidance of doubles and triples and even higher scores, it's been pretty tough over the last few weeks. We can make bogeys and be okay, but when you start racking up doubles and triples and quads, then that just wrecks rounds pretty quick.”

Indiana won the tournament with a first-place score of 858 (-6 under par). 

The Cardinals return to the course Oct. 18-19 in the Dayton Flyer Invitational. It is the last match of the fall season. 

Contact Charleston Bowles with comments at clbowles@bsu.edu or on Twitter @cbowles01.

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