A Look Back: 2005 Big Ten Championships
April 26, 2006
With the Indiana men's golf team looking for its first Big Ten title since 1997, IUHOOSIERS.com is taking a look back at the 2005 tournament, where the Hoosiers finished runner-up to Michigan State.
This season's championships (72 holes) will take place on Friday-Sunday, April 28-30, in Chicago. The event will be hosted by Northwestern and played at Conway Farms Golf Club. Conway Farms is set up as a par 71 with a yardage of 7,168.
MADISON, Wis. - In four years at Indiana, Jeff Overton has shattered nearly every school record and has accomplished nearly everything a collegian could possibly accomplish. And now he can add Big Ten champion to his resume. The senior dominated the field with a record-tying 17-under-par 199 (65-65-69) en route to a four-shot victory over Michigan State's Ryan Brehm at the Big Ten Championships at University Ridge Golf Course. Overton is the seventh Hoosier to win medalist honors at the Big Tens and the first since Shaun Micheel in 1991.
"(Winning) is really emotional for me right now," said Overton. "I was walking down 17, and I was thinking I had a chance to win. I just about had tears coming out of my eyes. This is a very special victory for me."
As a team, the Cream and Crimson recorded their best finish in head coach Mike Mayer's seven-year tenure and its best placing since winning the Championships in 1998, closing the tournament in second place. IU carded a 12-under-par 852 total (283-275-294), five strokes behind Michigan State (282-276-289). The Hoosiers bested third-place Northwestern (294-280-279) by one shot and fourth-place Minnesota (285-283-286) by a pair of shots.
"It was a great run," said Indiana head coach Mike Mayer. "We put ourselves in a position to win and just came up a little short. It was a tough day and we got off to a rough start, but I'm proud of how we recovered and proud of the kids. This also was a fitting end to Jeff Overton's Big Ten career. He is a deserving champion and one of the best players to ever play in this league, without question."
After matching the course record his first two rounds, Overton came back with a 3-under-par this afternoon, tying the Big Ten 54-hole mark of 199 set by Kevin Hall of Ohio State at last season's Championships. The All-American entered the final round with a three-shot lead and saw it trimmed to one through the first eight holes. However, a 4-iron from 230 yards out to 15 feet set up an eagle opportunity at the par-5 ninth, and Overton drained the putt to boost his lead to three and end Brehm's comeback attempt.
"It was a big momentum swing. I think it really put me in a great position to win," said Overton. "I was just attempting to go as low as possible to get our team the championship, and I ended up hitting a great shot into the green."
The Evansville, Ind., native went on to shoot 2-under coming in with the help of a second eagle at the par-5 16th on his way to the eighth victory of his career.
In addition to earning the Big Ten title, Overton picked up some hardware after the event. For the second straight year, the Palmer Cup team member was named Big Ten Player of the Year, becoming the first Hoosier since Randy Leen (1996-98) to garner the award in consecutive seasons. Overton also won the Les Bolstad Award for low season stroke average for the second time in as many years. And for the fourth straight season, Overton was named to the All-Big Ten team, claiming first team honors for the third time in his career.
Breaking his previous 54-hole personal best, Scott Seibert placed in a tie for sixth place with a 4-under-par 212. The junior closed out the Championships with a 1-over 73 after rounds of 71 and 68. Seibert's finish is his second-career top 10 and his second-best showing in his career (4th at the Pinehurst Invitational - March 28-29, 2005).
"I had a really good tournament," said Seibert. "I hit the ball extremely well today. I didn't putt the way I normally do, so I'm disappointed in that regard. But overall, it was a good experience, and I'm happy with my finish."
"I can't say enough about Scott," said Mayer. "To do what he did took a lot of guts. He fought through adversity all day and really gave an incredible effort."
Closing out their first Big Tens, freshman Santiago Quirarte earned a tie for 32nd, while sophomore walk-on Aaron Harrell placed in a tie for 41st place. Quirarte fired a final-round 75 to end the event at 221 (74-72-75). Harrell concluded the finishing 18 with a 77 on the heels of a pair of 73s in rounds one and two.
Rounding out the line up, Heath Peters completed the tournament in a tie for 48th at 226 (76-70-80).
"I'm happy with how we played. We did the best we could, we competed as hard as we could, and we left everything on the golf course," said Mayer.
Up next, the Hoosiers await the announcement of the field for the 2005 NCAA Regionals. The Regionals will be held in Notre Dame, Ind., on May 19-21. Indiana is looking for is second straight NCAA appearance, a feat that has not been accomplished since the 1995-96 and 1996-97 seasons.
2005 BIG TEN MEN'S GOLF AWARDS
2005 All-Big Ten Conference
2005 Big Ten Freshman of the Year
2005 Big Ten Player of the Year
2005 Big Ten Coach of the Year
Les Bolstad Award Winner (low season stroke average)
2005 Big Ten All-Championship Team
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