Sheldon Trails Leader by One Stroke after First Day of PLU's Collegiate Open

Kenneth Sheldon (Jr., Ocean Park, WA/Ilwaco HS)
Kenneth Sheldon (Jr., Ocean Park, WA/Ilwaco HS)

By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications

DuPONT, Wash. -- Kenneth Sheldon (Jr., Ocean Park, WA/Ilwaco HS) of Willamette University was tied for second place, just one stroke out of the lead, when the first round of the 2017 Collegiate Open, hosted by Pacific Lutheran University, ended on Sunday, Sept. 17. The tournament is being played on The Home Course with a par of 72 and a distance of 6,853 yards.

Sheldon was tied for second with Jake Larson from Community Colleges of Spokane, as each golfer shot a 3-under-par 69. Mac Turner from the University of Puget Sound held first place with a 4-under 68.

"Kenneth's 69 was big. He struck the ball pretty well all day," Willamette Head Coach Patrick Daugherty said. "To come out and go low the first round of the first tourney of the season is big-time."

Willamette was second in the team standings and trailed the leaders from North Idaho College by only two strokes. North Idaho College shot a team score of 287 and Willamette finished the round at 289. Southwestern Oregon Community College was third at 293 and Whitworth University was fourth at 296. Community Colleges of Spokane held fifth place at 298, while Pacific Lutheran was sixth at 299. A total of 14 teams are competing in the tournament.

"The guys played well. It's a really good field loaded with good teams," Daugherty said. "I thought this would be a good venue and event to kick off the season. There's still plenty of golf to play in round two, but I'm pleased overall with how they played today. It is a good start for sure."

Turner's 68 for Puget Sound was one of eight rounds below par. Following Sheldon and Larson, the next three golfers -- Mitchell Baldridge of PLU, Sean Langham of North Idaho, and Kobie Lockwood from Southwestern Oregon --- were tied for fourth with matching scores of 70. Jesse Henderson and Todd Henderson, both from North Idaho, shared seventh place at 71.

Two Bearcats were tied with another competitor for ninth place at even-par. Ben Graham (Fr., Renton, WA/Liberty HS) and Trent Jones (Jr., Kenmore, WA/Shorecrest HS) of Willamette each shot 72 to match Bodhi Parkin of Linfield College.

Willamette's team also included Sam Hinton (Jr., Seaside, OR/Seaside HS), Mason Phalen (Fr., Kenmore, WA/Inglemoor HS), Dylan King (Jr., Cottonwood, CA/West Valley HS) and Spencer Hong (Sr., Bellevue, WA/Singapore American School). Hinton contributed to Willamette's team score with a 76, while Phalen shot a 78.

Action at the 2017 Collegiate Open will conclude on Monday, Sept. 18 with the final 18 holes.