BEDMINSTER, N.J. - The James Madison men's golf team shot a tournament-best 1-over 289 in the final round and captured the team championship by 10 shots at the 2011 Barnabas Health Intercollegiate, Oct. 15-16. The two-day, 36-hole tournament, hosted by Seton Hall University, was at Fiddler's Elbow Country Club's River Course (Par 72 - 7,014 yards) in Bedminster, N.J.
For the second straight day, the Dukes battled challenging conditions with the gusty winds at the River Course and came away the top team on the day and in the event with a 36-hole score of 10-over 586. Madison's 289 in the final round was even more impressive in that none of the five JMU golfers shot more than 1-over 73 in the day's 18. Host Seton Hall was second at 596 after a final round 11-over 299. Temple placed third two shots behind the Pirates at 598, with Longwood at 602 and LIU-Brooklyn at 606 completing the top five squads of the 17 teams competing.
Madison was led by senior Chris Wellde (Ellicott City, Md./Centennial) as he birdied the 18th hole to finish at 1-over 73 on the day and even-par 144 for the tournament to finish in a four-way tie for the top spot. Wellde took home medalist honors in a scorecard playoff over Brandon Park of Seton Hall, Temple's Paul Carbone and Longwood's Ross Sumner. Freshman Trey Smith (Virginia Beach, Va./Kellam) and senior Mike Smith (Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla./Nease) each shot a 1-over 73 in the final round and tied for ninth at 4-over 148 with teammate junior Rich Leeper (Chapel Hill, N.C./Carrboro) , who had an even-par 72 in the last 18 to finish at 148. Junior Ryan Vince (Charlotte, N.C./Providence) had the top round for JMU in the last round, shooting a 1-under 71 to finish at 150 and post a top-20 finish with a tie for 18th.
"The team played great today considering the difficult conditions," Head Coach Jeff Forbes said. "Everyone on the team fought for every shot. Chris hung in there and made a difficult putt for birdie on 18 to win the tournament."
JMU will wrap up its fall portion of the 2011-12 schedule on Sun.-Tue., Oct. 23-25 at the OBX/ODU Kilmarlic Collegiate Invitational in Kitty Hawk, N.C.