Buerk and Maier lead Lions into championship stretch


News from Southern Golf

The Lions returned home this week after a seventh place finish at the Central Oklahoma Invite at Oklahoma City’s Gaillardia Country Club. The finish was helped in large part by the play of junior Ryan Buerk, who shot a team low 231, and a final-round 74, on his way to taking the 20th spot overall home for the Lions.

Behind Buerk were freshman Taylor Lansford and sophomore Ethan Hutcheson, who both finished with a 238 total, good enough to share the 33rd position ahead of senior Ryan Russell, who finished 39th.

With a total of 246 shots, senior Andrew Maier did not play the way he has shown he is capable of, but as a senior and one of the most consistent players on the Lions have, his teammates know his best golf is still ahead of him.

“Maier is a big contributor for our team and if we can get him going we will be turning in a lot better team scores,” said Buerk. “His play can really be a big difference maker for us.”

Following the first three tournaments of the spring portion of the season, Southern now sits in eighth place in the MIAA golf standings with a total of 17.5 points. Ahead of the Lions are seven other teams including Central Missouri, who sit atop the standings with 31 points, and the Bronchos of Central Oklahoma, who finished first last week at their home tournament, now in fifth position with 24 points.

“We have to make sure our guys know to keep fighting through their rounds to really finish them off strongly,” said Buerk. “Just continue to turn in scores around par to help with consistency.”

With the semester and the season winding down, the Lions have only a few opportunities left to climb in the final standings. The first comes this Monday as the team travels to Hollister for the Henderson State Invite, the final tournament before the 2014 MIAA Championship.