WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- The Lewis & Clark Pioneers concluded their season with an eighth-place finish at the NWC Championship and a seventh-place finish overall in the conference standings. Much improved conditions on the second day helped the Pioneers shave 26 strokes to shoot a second day total of 325 to give them a two day total of 676, just five shots behind seventh-place Pacific.
Willamette University took home the conference title with a two day total of 598. Willamette first place finish also allowed them to pull ahead of Whitworth for the top spot in the conference standings to give them an automatic bid to Nationals. George Fox's Joshua Lackey shot a five-under 67 after a round one 80 to take medalist honors.
Senior Robert Wang paced the Pioneers on day two with a round of 77 to give him a two day total of 171 to put him in a tie for 38th place out of 45. Wang had a rough start with a double bogey on his first hole but brought it around with four birdies on the day. Freshman Matthew Siemer also carded a two day total of 171 with a round-two 82 featuring a three-over par 39 on the back side.
Senior Jacob Bell was the top-ranked finisher for the Pioneers this weekend earning a tie for 34th place after carding an 83 for a two day total of 167. Bell had a rough start going nine-over through his first nine holes but finished well carding five pars in his final six holes. Freshman Grant Shimizu also carded a round two 83 to put him in solo 37th with a two day total of 170. Shimizu earned back-to-back birdies on holes one and two.
Senior Kade McCoy rounded out the top-five for the Pioneers with a round of 87 to give him a two day total of 177 to put him in a tie for 41st. McCoy had nine pars on the day.
- There are three tournaments during the season in which teams earn points: the Fall Classic, the Spring Classic and the Conference Championship. The Conference Championship is worth double the points.
- The Pioneers finished in seventh place in both the Fall and Spring Classics which gave them enough points to secure a seventh-place finish overall in the conference standings.
- Whitworth finished first in both the Fall and Spring Classics but a third-place finish in the Conference Championship put them just one point shy of first place.
- Every single team improved from day one to day two
- Seven players shot even or better on the day
The Lewis & Clark Pioneers opened the Northwest Conference Championships at Wine Valley Country Club with a round of 351 to put them in eighth place out of nine teams, one stroke behind Pacific. Sustained winds at 20 mph and gust up to 35 mph caused scores to be abnormally high across the board. Willamette leads the pack with a 21-over par 309 while Linfield's Matthew McClure carding the low round of the day, a two-over 74.
Senior Jacob Bell led the Pioneers with a round of 84 featuring a birdie on the par-3 16th. Freshman Grant Shimizu finished three-stroked behind Bell to put him in a tie for 30th. Shimizu struggled on the tough front side but brought it around nicely on the back with a four-over 40 to finish out the round. Matthew Siemer also struggled on the front side but shot seven strokes better on the back to finish with a round off 89 to put him in a tie for 36th.
Bell, Wang, and McCoy played the final rounds of their collegiate career and will be graduating in a couple of weeks. The Pioneers return Siemer and Shimizu next year as well as sophomores Ben Welker and Nick Lombardi.