Closing out their golf season at the Colonial Athletic Association Championship in Southport, N.C., the Drexel men’s golf team had its best finish ever in the tournament. The Dragons finished fourth overall, but the highlight was holding the lead after round 1. Unfortunately, head coach Mike Dynda and his team could not keep this lead and faltered back for a fourth-place finish after the third and final round.
“This was our best finish in my 10 years at Drexel, so that’s pretty good,” Dynda said of his team’s overall performance.
Dynda sent out four seniors and one freshman to compete in the tournament. Leading the Dragons throughout the tournament was senior James Braunsberg, who finished tied for 10th place in his final tournament as a Dragon. The senior from Plymouth Meeting, Pa., shot 71-76-81 for a three-day score of 228. The 71 Braunsberg shot on the first day tied him for first place along with Alex Hicks of The College of William & Mary.
Christopher Crawford shot a 230, good for 13th place in the final event of his freshman year. Crawford, who was the Dragons’ top golfer all season long, was inconsistent in his final tournament of the season. Crawford started well by shooting a 72 on the first day, which placed him second overall. However, he could not hold on to the momentum and faltered, as he shot a 77 and 81 on the second and third days of competition, respectively.
“We were in a position we have never been before,” Dynda said of his team’s ability to maintain the lead. “It was tough adjusting and learning how to handle being in the lead.”
Seniors Benjamin Feld, Andrew Lawson and Billy Reube were also competing in their last tournament for Drexel. Feld finished right after Crawford, tied for 14th place, by shooting 77-80-74 for a total score of 231. Lawson completed the tournament tied for 18th place, shooting 83-78-73 for a combined score of 234. Finally, there was Reube, who was a late addition and only competed in days 2 and 3 of the tournament. His combined two-day score was 163 after he shot 80-83 for the second and third rounds.
Dynda knew that cracking the top three would be a tough task for his team. Throughout the entire tournament there were opportunities for the Dragons to accomplish their goal, but the unfamiliarity with being in contention got the best of the team. Further proof of that mental obstacle was that Crawford, Braunsberg and Feld were all in the top 10 heading into the final nine holes on Sunday.
“I think this shows that we have the potential to hang with the other programs in the CAA,” Dynda said.
Coming off his team’s best finish ever at the CAA Championship, Dynda said he believes that his team can get better and will be looking to prove that next year. As a result of Drexel’s strong showing in the tournament, Dynda and the team received praise from fans everywhere, including Drexel Athletic Director Eric Zillmer.
“I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who was watching online [for] the texts and calls,” Dynda said. “Because they really meant a lot to us.”