Whitman College men golfers fifth at NWC Fall Classic

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REDMOND, Ore. - With freshman Andrew Welch placing fifth and senior Brian Barton taking seventh, Whitman College held off two other teams for fifth place as the 36-hole Northwest Conference Fall Classic ended its two-day run in the cold and rain at Juniper Golf Club here Sunday.

Whitman, nursing a one-stroke cushion over Pacific Lutheran and George Fox after Saturday's opening round, shot 323 (top four golfers) on Sunday to finish with a 663 total.

Pacific Lutheran also shot 323 on Sunday to take sixth, one shot back of Whitman. George Fox failed to keep pace, fading to seventh with a 681 total.

Puget Sound took first in the nine-school field with a 36-hole team total of 632. Next in line were Pacific 639, Linfield 644, and Whitworth 649.

Welch, who shot 77 on Saturday, was steady on Sunday, shooting 40 on both the front and back nine. His 157 total left him just two strokes out of third place.

Barton, after struggling to an 82 on Saturday, bounced back with a 77 on Sunday. After a double-bogey on No. 1 and bogeys on No. 3 and No. 5, he parred 14 of the last 15 holes and finished the tournament with a 159 total.

Sophomore Geoff Burks showed Whitman's biggest improvement on Sunday with an 81 - 11 strokes better than his Saturday score.

At 173, Burks finished one stroke in front of freshman teammate Jon Standen, who shot 85 on Sunday, a four-shot improvement from the day before.

Sophomore Eli Smith and senior Max Rausch both shot 86 on Sunday. Smith finished with a 177 total, three strokes in front of Rausch.

Pacific's Max Bonk defied the elements on Sunday, shooting a 6-under par 66 to take medalist honors with a 139 total. Linfield's Alex Fitch was 12 strokes back in second place.

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