Men's golf places 9th at Waterchase, final round cancelled due to bee nest

The Mercer men’s golf team opened up their season at the UTA/Waterchase Invitational in Arlington, TX on Sept. 19-20. The men finished the first day tied for ninth out of 19 teams and were only one stroke behind the eighth-place team after the opening two rounds. The result remained the same after the final round was cancelled due to bees on the course.

Mercer’s team leader during the tournament was Hans Reimers, who shot a 74 and 68 on the opening two rounds, and Reimers tied for third place individually. Sophomore James Beale had the second lowest total for the Bears, scoring 75 on both of the opening rounds. Alex Street finished third for the Bears, shooting 78 and 76. Mercer’s team total was rounded out by Thomas Holmes and John Wilson Gordon, who shot 80-77 and 82-79 respectively. The Bears were looking forward to improving on their opening round performance Monday, but they didn’t receive the opportunity to translate their expectations into results, as the third and final round of the Waterchase Invitational was canceled. 

A nest of bees located on the course was disturbed when a golf ball was hit into the area. A beekeeper was called to the scene to investigate, and the keeper estimated that the hive was 75,000 bees strong. The final round of the tournament was cancelled for safety purposes, meaning that Mercer’s ninth place position after the first two rounds remained as their final placement in the tournament. 

Coach Steve Bradley had this to say when asked about his team’s performance: “We had an average performance. Hans played very well, and I am looking forward to seeing what he can do this year, but overall it was a pretty realistic finish for us. It showed us some weaknesses, but we have been able to work on those and build from that. We will definitely turn this performance into a positive.” 

When asked about the tournament, junior Alex Street said, “Hans played very well for our team, but our team didn’t quite play as well as we could have. The conditions on the course were a little different than what we were used to, but we adjusted to them. Our team was playing pretty well during the final round until it was cancelled.”

The Bears will be looking to build upon their opening performance of their 2011-2012 season when they host their first event of the year at the Brickyard in Macon.  The Brickyard Collegiate is on Oct. 7- 9 and will feature some of the best schools in the nation. When asked about his team’s preparation for the Brickyard, Bradley said, “I think it has been going well; we have another week to do a little bit of fine tuning, but I am looking forward to watching our guys perform against some of the top teams in the nation.” The Brickyard is free for students to attend, and all Mercerians are encouraged to come out and support the Bears in one of the premier collegiate golf events.