2022 Patriot All-American | Piercen Hunt

Piercen Hunt | 2022 Patriot All-America

LITCHFIELD PARK, Ariz. — Piercen Hunt stood outside the clubhouse Thursday at Wigwam Resort and uttered a four-letter word that, in his mind, best described his approach to golf during 2022.

Lazy.

Of course, that one has led to others over the past 12 months for the 2021 Wisconsin State Amateur champion from Hartland, most not suitable for print here. But you get the idea.

Hunt came to The Patriot All-America Invitational for the third year in a row — fresh from a two-month break from competitive golf — eager to spend the last three days of 2022 forgetting about the first 362. It's been that kind of year for the University of Illinois junior.

"It's been incredibly frustrating," Hunt said. "The spring season, for school, wasn't horrible, but there was just so much inconsistency. A lot of really bad habits crept in. I got pretty lazy through the summer and then this fall. It showed in every aspect of my life and the golf scores were a really easy way to track it and all the missed cuts in the summer and not really helping my team out too much in the fall. 

"It was as much of a reality check as I needed. I had some pretty good talks with my coaches at school. I feel there are changes I've been making that are helping, but I still have a good ways to go before I feel like I'm back where I want to be."

Thursday's opening round of this college golf showcase showed glimpses of the golfer that went from being a two-time WIAA Division 1 state champion at Arrowhead (Hartland) to a State Am winner in a span of five years (and all before he turned 20). Hunt made three birdies and was 1-under with four holes to play before the last two of his four three-putts left him with a 2-over-par 73, tied for 58th place among the 84 golfers competing on Wigwam's Gold Course in the main portion of the 12th annual event honoring fallen or severely wounded soldiers in partnership with the Folds of Honor Foundation.

Hunt is seven strokes behind co-leaders Ben Lorenz of Oklahoma, David Nyfjäll of Northwestern and Pearse Lucas of NCAA Division III Sewanee, who combined for 17 birdies and one eagle in shooting matching rounds of 5-under 66. Golfers played lift-clean-and-place after nearly an inch of rain fell Wednesday on Phoenix's West Valley, forcing cancellation of the Am-Am.

Meanwhile, at Sterling Grove Golf & Country Club in nearby Surprise, UW-Eau Claire golfer Cole Jahnke made five birdies and one bogey in a 4-under 32 on the front nine to rally for a 3-under 69, putting him in a tie for eighth place just two strokes behind leader Andi Xu of the University of San Diego. Max Schwarz, who transferred to the University of Wisconsin after four years at Division III Emory University, shot 74 and was T-38 out of 64 golfers after the first day of the three-day event.

"My last tournament round was the last one of our fall season (on Oct. 25)," Hunt said, referring to the Islesworth Collegiate in Windermere, Fla., where he shot 77-72-73 and placed T-34. "It's kind of been like early off-season work, getting all my swing changes and everything I want put in place the last couple months. ... This was my window where I had the opportunity to make any changes I needed to (with Illini coach Mike Small).

"(Thursday) it felt pretty good tee-to-green; I didn't really make too many mistakes. I just shot myself in the foot with the putter."

Indeed, Hunt had four three-putts in his round. The most damaging came on the par-3 sixth hole where Hunt came up a half-club short on the 196-yard par-3, leaving himself with a fried-egg lie in the bunker that he could do no better than blast out to about 35 feet from the cup with an awkward angle for his par putt.

"My whole thing with putting, as the years have gone on, is make it simpler," said Hunt, who would size up each putt, stand over the ball and take an aggressive run at it without so much as a practice stroke. "Take out all the different factors that make me think when I'm over the ball. My routine is really quick. I line it up, but once I'm over it, it's pretty much take my grip, look at the hole and then fire away."

Hunt left Wigwam Resort eager to take aim at the next two days of the tournament, hoping to continue to build confidence in the work he's done to break out of his slump.

He knows there isn't much he can do about his recent past, except be motivated by it. As thrilling as it was to help Illinois win another Big Ten Conference championship by one stroke over Michigan State, it was every bit as crushing the following week when the Illini finished T-6 at the NCAA New Haven Regional and missed qualifying for the NCAA Championships by just four strokes.

"Everything I'm working on is to build for the future," Hunt said. "More than anything else, there just has to be some sort of shift immediately. You can be in a slump for a few events or for a couple of months even, but when you play like crap for a year there's something wrong beyond just being a golfer.

"The last year has been super-disappointing. Given where I was a little more than a year ago today and looking at where I'm at right now, it sucks. I'm definitely super-hungry to reverse that and make this last year-and-a-half of amateur golf worth it."

College men's golf: Hartland's Piercen Hunt at Patriot All-American Tournament | First-round results (Wigwam GC/Gold Course-Litchfield Park, Ariz.)

Pos. Player Total Friday
Tee Time
R1 R2 Score
Wisconsin leaderboard
T58 Hunt, PiercenUniversity of Illinois 2 10:40 AM* 73 73
Full leaderboard
T1 Lorenz, BenUniversity of Oklahoma -5 11:40 AM 66 66
T1 Nyfjäll, DavidNorthwestern University -5 11:40 AM 66 66
T1 Lucas, PearseSewanee, University of the South -5 11:40 AM 66 66
T4 Fioroni, CadenUniversity of Nevada Las Vegas -4 11:30 AM 67 67
T4 Isley, WalkerUniversity of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW) -4 11:30 AM 67 67
T4 Jones, ConnorColorado State University -4 11:30 AM 67 67
T7 Johnson, RylanOregon state University -3 11:10 AM 68 68
T7 Campbell Jr., StephenUniversity of Oklahoma -3 11:10 AM 68 68
T7 Gingerich, TyUniversity of Cincinnati -3 11:10 AM 68 68
T7 Shears, MichaelUniversity of Georgia -3 11:20 AM 68 68
T7 Sekne, HermanPurdue University -3 11:20 AM 68 68
T7 Forrester, BartleyGeorgia Tech -3 11:20 AM 68 68
T13 Carner, HaydenGeorgia Southern University -2 10:40 AM 69 69
T13 Bryant, DavisColorado State University -2 10:40 AM 69 69
T13 Lundell, CarsonBrigham Young University -2 10:40 AM 69 69
T13 Baker, BrantleyGeorgia Southern University -2 10:50 AM 69 69
T13 Taylor II, TroyMichigan State University -2 10:50 AM 69 69
T13 Ege, MatsEast Tennessee State University -2 10:50 AM 69 69
T13 Salvanera, GabrielArizona State University -2 11:00 AM 69 69
T13 Oyo, LeoOklahoma State University -2 11:00 AM 69 69
T13 Lin, Chuan-TaiUniversity of Washington -2 11:00 AM 69 69
T22 Pulcini, MateoOklahoma Christian University -1 9:50 AM 70 70
T22 Leach, GreysonUniversity of Oregon -1 10:00 AM 70 70
T22 Kamin, ChrisBradley University -1 10:00 AM 70 70
T22 Lundin, JackUniversity of Missouri -1 10:00 AM 70 70
T22 Heffernan, ZachBaylor University -1 10:10 AM 70 70
T22 Howe, ConnorGeorgia Tech -1 10:10 AM 70 70
T22 Snoeberger, PeytonPurdue University -1 10:10 AM 70 70
T22 Jackson, PalmerUniversity of Notre Dame -1 10:20 AM 70 70
T22 Sylven, JoelUniversity Of Missouri St Louis -1 10:20 AM 70 70
T22 DeLong, CharlesGrand Valley State University -1 10:20 AM 70 70
T22 Meekhof, AugustMichigan State University -1 10:30 AM 70 70
T22 Stewart, DillonOklahoma State University -1 10:30 AM 70 70
T22 Chirravuri, MahanthUniversity of Southern California -1 10:30 AM 70 70
T35 Appel, JonasBaylor University E 9:30 AM 71 71
T35 Maspat, IanPepperdine University E 9:30 AM 71 71
T35 Rivera, JacksonUniversity of Southern California E 9:30 AM 71 71
T35 Moss, SebastianUniversity of Louisville E 9:40 AM 71 71
T35 Choi, EthanNorth Carolina State E 9:40 AM 71 71
T35 Williams, WellsVanderbilt University E 9:40 AM 71 71
T35 Crockett, HarryUniversity of Nebraska E 9:50 AM 71 71
T35 Sommerhauser, SamUniversity of Arizona E 9:50 AM 71 71
T35 Partridge, BenjaminUniversity of San Francisco E 9:30 AM* 71 71
T35 Wallin, IsacKeiser University E 9:30 AM* 71 71
T35 Lewis, RileyLoyola Marymount University E 9:30 AM* 71 71
T35 Keefer, JohnnyBaylor University E 9:40 AM* 71 71
T47 Layne, IsaacUS Air Force Academy 1 9:40 AM* 72 72
T47 Chandler, JacksonOhio State University 1 9:40 AM* 72 72
T47 Belisle, CecilUniversity of Kansas 1 9:50 AM* 72 72
T47 Van Paris, JacksonVanderbilt University 1 9:50 AM* 72 72
T47 Timmins, DavidBrigham Young University 1 9:50 AM* 72 72
T47 Cossement, NathanHenderson State University 1 10:00 AM* 72 72
T47 Loflin, CarterUniversity of Georgia 1 10:00 AM* 72 72
T47 Burnette, BeckLee University 1 10:00 AM* 72 72
T47 Buchanan, JacksonUniversity of Illinois 1 10:10 AM* 72 72
T47 Dowell, JaxonUniversity of Oklahoma 1 10:10 AM* 72 72
T47 Gifford, LukePepperdine University 1 10:10 AM* 72 72
T58 Summerhays, PrestonArizona State 2 10:20 AM* 73 73
T58 Moriyama, YukiUNLV 2 10:20 AM* 73 73
T58 Jacobs, FrancoisUniversity of North Alabama 2 10:20 AM* 73 73
T58 Coelho, KikoArizona State 2 10:30 AM* 73 73
T58 Mao, AndyGeorgia Tech 2 10:30 AM* 73 73
T58 Driscoll, JohnNorthwestern University 2 10:30 AM* 73 73
T58 Hunt, PiercenUniversity of Illinois 2 10:40 AM* 73 73
T58 Lyerly, NickUNCG 2 10:40 AM* 73 73
T58 Arcement, NicholasLouisiana State University 2 10:40 AM* 73 73
T67 Leigh, GeorgeUniversity of Nevada Las Vegas 3 10:50 AM* 74 74
T67 Moldovan, MaxwellOhio State University 3 10:50 AM* 74 74
T67 Lewis, TrevorEmbry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Prescott 3 10:50 AM* 74 74
T67 Gatcomb, ChristopherVGA 3 11:00 AM* 74 74
T67 Strathe, JaredOral Roberts University 3 11:00 AM* 74 74
T72 Daniel, MarshallUnited States Military Academy 4 11:00 AM* 75 75
T72 Kitt, DavidMaynooth university 4 11:10 AM* 75 75
T72 Foley, HughBelverdere College SJ 4 11:10 AM* 75 75
T72 Marcon, AngeloUniversity of Notre Dame 4 11:10 AM* 75 75
T72 Humphries, J. HollandSouthern Methodist University 4 11:20 AM* 75 75
T72 Martin, GarrettTexas Tech 4 11:20 AM* 75 75
T72 Griffin, RyanMaynooth University 4 11:20 AM* 75 75
79 Doyle, EricUniversity of Oregon 5 11:30 AM* 76 76
T80 Dobson, Sean KarlStandford 6 11:30 AM* 77 77
T80 Kowack, TylerSan Diego State University 6 11:30 AM* 77 77
T82 Shreves, KeeganU.S. Naval Academy 9 11:40 AM* 80 80
T82 Brackett, PorterUniversity Of Tampa 9 11:40 AM* 80 80
84 Markham, SeanSonoma State 11 11:40 AM* 82 82

College men's golf: UW-Eau Claire's Cole Jahnke, Univ. of Wisconsin's Max Schwarz at The Thunderbolt All-American | First-round results (Sterling Grove CC-Surprise, Ariz.)

Pos. Player Total Friday
Tee Time
R1 R2 Score
Wisconsin leaderboard
T8 Jahnke, ColeUniversity of Wisconsin- Eau Claire -3 10:00 AM 69 69
T38 Schwarz, MaxUniversity of Wisconsin 2 9:40 AM* 74 74
Full leaderboard
1 Xu, AndiUniversity of San Diego -5 10:30 AM 67 67
T2 Lloyd, JosephFresno State University -4 10:30 AM 68 68
T2 Hodgkinson, CollinOregon State University -4 10:30 AM 68 68
T2 Missigman, ZackSaint Mary's College of California -4 10:20 AM 68 68
T2 Aurilia, ChazUniversity of Arizona -4 10:20 AM 68 68
T2 Walker, JohnnyUniversity Of Arizona -4 10:10 AM 68 68
T2 McCoy, CalvinUniversity of Arizona -4 10:20 AM 68 68
T8 Sawaia, BenUniversity of Nevada Las Vegas -3 10:10 AM 69 69
T8 Jahnke, ColeUniversity of Wisconsin- Eau Claire -3 10:00 AM 69 69
T8 Rothwell, JacksonUniversity of San Francisco -3 10:10 AM 69 69
T8 Hyland, JordanDavis and Elkins College -3 10:00 AM 69 69
T8 Wrightson, DrewBaylor University -3 10:00 AM 69 69
T13 Clark, TuckerUniversity of Colorado -2 9:50 AM 70 70
T13 Beach, WarnerGlendale Community college -2 9:50 AM 70 70
T13 Reynolds, MaxTyler Junior College -2 9:50 AM 70 70
T13 Mattioli, MatthewWittenberg University -2 9:40 AM 70 70
T13 Cantafio, JadenWashington State University -2 9:40 AM 70 70
T18 Unverzagt, EthanUniversity of West Florida -1 9:40 AM 71 71
T18 Norwich, JacksonUniversity of Arizona -1 9:30 AM 71 71
T18 Roller, JamesTexas Tech University -1 9:30 AM 71 71
T18 Dudeck, JackThe Master's University -1 9:30 AM 71 71
T22 Franklin, WalkerUniversity Of Louisville E 9:20 AM 72 72
T22 Narizzano, GeronimoUniversity of Rhode Island E 9:20 AM 72 72
T22 Thompson, EvanUniversity of North Georgia E 9:10 AM 72 72
T22 Guthrie, TannerUniversity of North Carolina-Charlotte E 9:20 AM 72 72
T22 Thomson, HunterUniversity of Michigan E 9:10 AM 72 72
T22 Tarkany, JacobOhio State University E 9:10 AM 72 72
T22 McKinlay, BradyUtah Valley University E 9:00 AM 72 72
T22 Szeto, BaronCalifornia Polytechnic State University E 9:00 AM 72 72
T22 Bell, ThomasBowling Green State University E 9:00 AM 72 72
T31 Chokprajakchat, ChanachonSan Diego State University 1 9:00 AM* 73 73
T31 Padilla, Juan AntonioUniversity of Missouri-St. Louis 1 9:00 AM* 73 73
T31 Ullan, MaxWashburn University 1 9:00 AM* 73 73
T31 Fox, AlfieUniversity of Alabama-Birmingham 1 9:10 AM* 73 73
T31 Pollman, ConnorLee University 1 9:10 AM* 73 73
T31 Sawaia, BrettUniversity of Nevada Las Vegas 1 9:10 AM* 73 73
T31 Bozak, BraydenUniversity of Nevada Las Vegas 1 9:20 AM* 73 73
T38 Imig, ColeUniversity of Alabama-Birmingham 2 9:20 AM* 74 74
T38 Barnetche, HectorOttawa University-Arizona 2 9:20 AM* 74 74
T38 Pedersen, JacobUniversity of Minnesota 2 9:30 AM* 74 74
T38 Thomas, JacobUniversity of South Carolina Beaufort 2 9:30 AM* 74 74
T38 Roberts IV, FredPiedmont University 2 9:30 AM* 74 74
T38 Schwarz, MaxUniversity of Wisconsin 2 9:40 AM* 74 74
T38 Aurilia, GavinUniversity of Southern California 2 9:40 AM* 74 74
T38 Alford, Jon ErikOhio State University 2 9:40 AM* 74 74
T38 Boyajian, ScottAurora University 2 10:00 AM* 74 74
T38 Izuzquiza, InigoUniversity of Nevada Las Vegas 2 10:00 AM* 74 74
T48 Oyama, DylanSan Diego State University 3 10:00 AM* 75 75
T48 Fahy, AlanMaynooth University 3 9:50 AM* 75 75
T48 Sprecher, RusselNorthern Michigan University 3 9:50 AM* 75 75
T48 Rönnberg, HugoBellevue University 3 9:50 AM* 75 75
T48 Harrigan, JoeyRensselaer Polytechnic Institute 3 10:10 AM* 75 75
T53 Ouellette, ArmandKenyon College 4 10:10 AM* 76 76
T53 Morrow, JohnSeattle University 4 10:10 AM* 76 76
T55 Klose, EthanSouth Mountain Community College 5 10:20 AM* 77 77
T55 Candelaria III, AbeUtah Tech University 5 10:20 AM* 77 77
T57 Aber, JohnWittenberg University 6 10:20 AM* 78 78
T57 Townsend, JackSan Diego State University 6 10:30 AM* 78 78
T57 Gronka, GrantHuntingdon College 6 10:30 AM* 78 78
T60 Vucic, FrankUniversity of Kansas 7 10:30 AM* 79 79
T60 O'Donnell, SeanArizona Golf Association 7 10:40 AM* 79 79
T60 Nagy, JoshRobert Morris University 7 10:40 AM* 79 79
63 Shackelford, KolbyKirkwood Community College 9 10:40 AM* 81 81
WD Sides, WilliamSouthern Methodist University - WD -

rob@killarneygolfmedia.com

Rob started covering the state's golf scene in 1987 at the Wisconsin State Journal in Madison. He joined Killarney Golf Media in 2015 and helped develop Wisconsin.Golf's extensive coverage of junior, high school, college, amateur and pro golf.

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