LASALLE, ILL. - Battling rainy weather for a second consecutive year at Senica's Oak Ridge Golf Club, the 2018 NJCAA Region IV Division II & III Men's Golf Tournament finished with Black Hawk College and Madison College securing their respective team and individual titles. The Braves captured the Division II crown with a team score of 869 over 54 holes, while the WolfPack posted an 837 while playing just 45 holes to claim the DIII title. Reilly McGranahan of Black Hawk and Carter Simon of Madison were the individual medalists, and led a group of 22 golfers to earn All-Region honors.
Black Hawk College led start-to-finish after opening with a 290 to secure an early 13 shot lead. The advantage over second place College of Lake County decreased to 12 after the Lancers bested the Braves in Round 2 with a 296. The third and final round was broken up into nine holes played on Friday and Saturday, and saw Black Hawk sign off on a impressive team total of 282, the lowest score of any round by a team in the whole tournament, to finish 30 strokes ahead of CLC at 899. The region championship is the 13th consecutive for coach Gary Huber and the Braves.
Freshman Rielly McGranahan punctuated an outstanding debut season by taking Region IV DII Tournament Medalist honors with a three-day total of 210. Following an even-par-72 on Thursday, McGranahan shot one-under-71 for Round 2 to take a one-shot lead into the final 18 holes. He completely pulled away from the pack with a five-under-par 67 to secure a nine-shot victory over teammate Eric Spurgetis and Trevor Britton of Lake County at 219.
Black Hawk College and the College of Lake County both qualify for the 2019 NJCAA Division II Men's Golf National Championships at Swan Lake Golf Resort in Plymouth, Indiana, from May 21-24, 2019.
In an unconventional tournament, Madison College prevailed to claim its second Region IV Championship in a true one-horse race. Due to a postseason ban handed down by the NJCAA on the College of DuPage and too few players for Elgin Community College, the WolfPack were the only team left standing in the Division III field. The WolfPack posted an 837 team score over a rain-shortened 45-hole, which was highlighted by a season-best 317 in Round 2. They opened with a 344 and closed with a nine-hole 176. Madison College previously won the Region IV title in 2015.
Sophomore Carter Simon ran away with the individual title, besting teammate Connor Rufenacht by 17 strokes. Simon carded an opening-round five-over-77, then was plus-four with a 76 on Friday, before finishing with a two-over 38 to reach his 191 total. The tournament win is the first of the year for Simon and the WolfPack. Rufenacht was second with a 208.
Madison College qualifies for the 2019 NJCAA Division III Men's Golf Championships at Chautauqua Golf Club in Chautauqua, New York, from June 4-7, 2019.
Division II All-Region Team
*Rielly McGranahan, Black Hawk College - 210
Eric Spurgetis, Black Hawk College - 219
Trevor Britton, College of Lake County - 219
Karl Torola, College of Lake County - 220
Jackson Clark, Waubonsee Community College - 221
Jeffrey Perez, Black Hawk College - 221
Cole Ruckman, Sauk Valley Community College - 221
Aaron Willie, Black Hawk College - 222
Max Rohlinger, Bryant & Stratton College - 225
Brady Grafton, Carl Sandburg College - 226
Nzelu Maitha, Oakton College - 227
Jake Hed, Waubonsee Community College - 228
Colton Guy, Sauk Valley Community College - 228
Jack Haberkorn, Oakton College - 229
Konnor Kininmonth, College of Lake County - 229
Coach of the Year
Gary Huber, Black Hawk College
Division III All-Region Team
*Carter Simon, Madison College - 191
Connor Rufenacht, Madison College - 208
Sam Rodriguez, Elgin Community College - 213
Joe Cayer, Madison College - 218
Cole Salzman, Madison College - 229
Luke Landry, Elgin Community College - 237
Matt Jordan, Elgin Community College - 248
Coach of the Year
Glenn Eichstedt, Madison College