Junior James Fenner finished in a three way tie for eighth to earn All-Conference Honors at the Midwest Conference Golf Championships this past weekend at Aldeen Golf Club in Rockford, Ill. Fenner was also named to the All-Conference team last season when he finished in sixth place.
The tournament featured three different rain delays, presenting an additional challenge to the golfers competing at the tournament.
Fenner also used previous experience to push through the conditions.
“I have been in tournaments before where the weather doesn’t cooperate. You just have to play through it,” he said.
Fenner fired a first round 78 before the rain shutout play, then shot a 40 when the play in round two was limited to just nine holes. He entered round three in a tie for sixth but dropped slightly with a closing round of 80. St. Norbert’s Nic Vrubley came away with the individual title by three strokes over Carroll University’s Blaine Lynch.
Knox finished seventh in the team competition, with St. Norbert also taking the team title.
Moving forward, Fenner believes that if he makes the right adjustments, he can not only medal for a third time, but come away with a title like former teammate Bobby Stuebi ‘12, who claimed a conference title in 2012.
“Next year, my focus is definitely going to be on my putting,” Fenner said. “I hit the ball well enough to win, but you really need to putt well at [Aldeen] if you are going to win. It’s a professional level golf course, and I know putting is what took Bobby to the next level.”
From a team perspective, Fenner believes new head coach K.C. Harding will improve the program.
“[Coach Harding] is going to bring a new intensity to the program, which is something we haven’t had in a while,” Fenner said.
Fenner also believes the continued improvement of some of the less experienced players bodes well for next season.
“Guys like [sophomore] Matt Gordon, who had not played a competitive round of golf before this season, made great strides. If things keep going that way we are going to have a really good year next year,” he said.