Badgers men's golf team | 2018 Big Ten Match Play

The 2018 Badgers men's golf team | 2018 Big Ten Match Play | 3rd Place

Badgers Men's Golf photo via Twitter

PALM COAST, Florida — If Friday was one of the most significant days in recent history for the University of Wisconsin men's golf program, Saturday was one of the most challenging.

That's because the Badgers had a tough act to follow: Their own.

They were more than up to the challenge on the final day of the Big Ten Conference Match Play Championship at Hammock Dunes. UW scored a 3.5-2.5 victory over Nebraska, ranked 161st in the GolfStat.com NCAA Division I rankings, in the morning to close out pool play with a 3-0 record and then fought past No. 39 Penn State 4-2 in the third-place match.

Technically, the Badgers were the only school to go unbeaten and untied during the two-day event. Michigan State and Purdue played to a 3-3 draw in the championship match and split the team title in a unique format in which the crossover seedings were determined by a combination of individual and team matches won (Purdue got the nod over UW in the Western Division because the Boilermakers won 13 individual matches to just 10½ for the Badgers).

"(Saturday) was a big test because of well we did (Friday) beating two ranked programs, so it was imperative that we backed that up with our performance today," UW coach Michael Burcin said. "(Friday) was huge, and so important for the program, but we didn't want to leave this weekend 2-2, and the guys came out there and played great golf. I am super happy for them, it builds a lot of confidence moving forward."

After sweeping 12th-ranked Illinois and No. 44 Northwestern in the first two rounds, the Badgers came out in a fog against Nebraska. No, really, it was so foggy on The Conservatory Course in the morning Saturday that the final round of pool play matches had to be shortened to nine holes.

That was enough time for UW to turn back the Cornhuskers. The Badgers got wins from Jordan Hahn, Griffin Barela and Pete Kuhl, leaving it up to senior Eddie Wajda to scratch out the final half-point and clinch the victory for UW.

Kuhl, Barela and Nick Robinson won matches in the afternoon, leaving the outcome of the Badgers' final match in the hands of freshman Sam Anderson. The Stoughton native delivered a 4-and-3 victory to help UW — ranked No. 92 entering the weekend — dispatch another team ranked ahead of it.

"It was all hands on deck and everybody contributed, but it is hard to look past what our freshman did," Burcin said. "Sam and Griffin (Barela) made huge contributions and pushed us through this weekend. We are glad they are wearing red."

UW returns to its indoor practice facility at University Ridge for the next month. The Badgers do not compete again until March 12 at the Colleton River Collegiate in Bluffton, South Carolina.

"We're in a good spot," Burcin said. "We're going to get back to work on things we need to fix, but we have a ton of confidence moving forward and we are going to build off this."


 

Wisconsin 4, Penn State 2

 
Pete Kuhl
Wisconsin
 

<< 3 & 2

 
 
Ryan Dornes
Penn St
 
 
 
Eddie Wajda
Wisconsin
 

3 & 2 >>

 
 
Daniel Martinez
Penn St
 
 
 
Jordan Hahn
Wisconsin
 

4 & 3 >>

 
 
Charles Huntzinger
Penn State
 
 
 
Nick Robinson
Wisconsin
 

<< 2-Up 

 
 
Ryan Davis
Penn St
 
 
 
Sam Anderson
Wisconsin
 

<< 4 & 3

 
 
Alec Bard
Penn St
 
 
 
Griffin Barela
Wisconsin
 

<< 1-Up 

 
 
Cole Miller
Penn St
 
 

Wisconsin 3.5, Nebraska 2.5

 
Jordan Hahn
Wisconsin
 

<< 2UP

 
 
Jace Guthmiller
Nebraska
 
 
 
Griffin Barela
Wisconsin
 

<< 2&1

 
 
Jackson Wendling
Nebraska
 
 
 
Nick Robinson
Wisconsin
 

2&1 >> 

 
 
Tanner Owen
Nebraska
 
 
 
Pete Kuhl
Wisconsin
 

<< 2-UP 

 
 
Cameron Jones
Nebraska
 
 
 
Sam Anderson
Wisconsin
 

3&2 >> 

 
 
Dylan McCabe
Nebraska
 
 
 
Eddie Wajda
Wisconsin
 

<< HALVED >> 

 
 
Sean Song
Nebraska