JACKSON, Tenn. - The Lipscomb Bisons golf team finished the Grover Page Classic in fourth place.
Tennessee-Martin, the host team, climbed from third to first in the final 18 holes Tuesday, shooting a team score of 296 and an 890 for the 54-hole tournament at the Jackson Country Club.
Union University finished second with a total score of 893 followed by Murray State in third at 898 and Lipscomb one shot back with a team score of 899.
Will Brewer, Lipscomb director of golf, saw the Bisons chances of winning the tournament fade on the final four holes.
“We lost by nine shots and we probably threw away eight-to-10 shots on those last four holes,” Brewer said. “We made poor choices and did not execute well.
“We didn’t have a live score board, so we don’t know for sure, but we were within reach of winning the tournament with five holes to go. On the last three holes we had two double bogies and a birdie on one hole, two bogies on another hole and three bogies on the final hole.”
Blanton Farmer was the top finisher for the Purple and Gold. He tied for fourth with a score of 219 (68, 74, 77). Farmer was named to the All-Tournament team for his efforts.
“Blanton played extremely well the first day,” Brewer said. “But he did not finish well and it left a bad taste in his mouth.
“I hope that motivates him to know that he can be in the hunt in just about any tournament he is in. He is playing that well. But he has to let the game come to him and not try to force it. He can be one, two or three in any tournament if he does that for three rounds.”
Also in the top 10 for LU was Ryan Terry. He finished tied for sixth with a 221 (71, 74, 76).
Paul Kleine-Kracht made the jump to a tie for 17th place with a score of 227 (74, 77, 76).
“Paul has made a really good transformation from where he was a couple of weeks ago,” Brewer said.
Rounding out the scoring for the Bisons were Dustin Wilder in a tie for 36th with a 234 (79, 75, 80) and Nathan Mueting in a tie for 50th with a score of 240 (79, 83, 78).
The Bisons finished the first round in first place Monday. Brewer admits he is disappointed his LU team could not finish the match with a team win.
“I don’t want to create a negative,” Brewer said. “But they are just not following through with the mental training we have been going through. They are getting it about 67 percent of the time.
“I’m very young with this team, but what I see is that they haven’t had much success in their two, three or four years here in terms of finishing. They are not accustomed to knowing how to win.”
Other schools in the field were Morehead State, Tennessee Tech, Southern Illinois, Tennessee State, John A. Logan Community College, Trevecca Nazarene, Jackson State and Bethel College.
“This was a good tournament except for about six holes,” Brewer said. “We are still learning. We still have some things we need to tighten up on.
“Part of it is our process. There is a process of getting into the shot and getting into the specifics of the job at hand that they have not totally absorbed and bought into. We are getting better, but they have to commit to carrying through with every shot for 54 holes.”