The fifth annual Northwest Iowa National Invitational Tournament saw Texas Wesleyan come away with their first team title in Le Mars by just two strokes.
Heading into Tuesday, the Rams were sitting in third place trailing the lead by eight strokes with 18 holes to go. Texas Wesleyan head coach Kevin Long says he reminded the guys to stay in the moment heading into the final round, and they did that.
The Rams also came away with the individual title thanks to Juan Ricardo Davila Bone, a senior from Guatemala. Davila Bone trailed the lead by seven strokes heading into the final 18 holes, and he took Coach Long’s message to heart. He went on to tie the course record shooting a 65 to cut the lead from seven strokes to nothing by round’s end. Davila Bone says he simplified things to focus and come away with a tremendous round.
The individual title came down to Davila Bone and MidAmerica Nazarene’s Colby Unruh who led the field by six strokes heading into the final round and watched that lead disappear after shooting a 72 paired with Davila Bone’s 65. The two faced off in a playoff hole on 18 where Davila Bone took the title shooting a four. Davila Bone says he had a plan going into that hole and executed it well.
Coach Long says Davila Bone and the team really practiced what they have been teaching lately. That was the idea of finishing off rounds strong or running through the finish line. Long says that made the team win special, and the individual title was the icing on the cake.
Davila Bone says the key to playing Willow Creek is keeping the ball on the fairway and understanding distance control when in less-than-ideal circumstances.
The Rams definitely want to take this momentum into the rest of their season. Coach Long says to do that they need to continue to play well in their short game.
The Rams will next be in action in Dalton, Georgia when they go to a meet the first week in October hosted by Dalton State College.