Minnesota Golf Association

Gutzmer Leads Johnnies to 13th MIAC Title

May 2, 2021

 HASTINGS, Minn. – St. John’s University clinched its 13th Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference victory in record-breaking fashion, posting a 54-hole team tally of 850 -- 27 shots better than its record-setting performance in 2006.

St. Thomas finished second, 14 behind the Johnnies at 864, and Concordia was third at 873.
All five St. John’s golfers finished the championship inside the top-12 Sunday at Emerald Greens Golf Club as the Johnnies earned an automatic berth to the 2021 NCAA Division III Championships, May 11-14 at Oglebay Resort in Wheeling, W. Va.
Thomas Gutzmer led the way for the Johnnies, closing with a 4-under 68, which gave him a three-round total of 208 (8 under) and earned him co-medalist honors, along with Matt Armstrong of St. Thomas. Armstrong shot 69. Gutzmer, a sophomore from Jordan, becomes the 12th golfer in program history to claim top honors at the MIAC Championship.
Opening the championship with a 71 on Friday, Gutzmer moved up the leaderboard Saturday with a 69. He would have been leading the tournament at that point, except that the Tommies' Armstrong, a freshman from Eden Prairie, birdied five of his last six holes en route to a second-round 68 and a 36-hole aggregate of 139, one ahead of Gutzmer and his St. John's teammate Sam Berger.

That set the stage for the show that Gutzmer and Armstrong would put on Sunday, when they combined for 10 birdies and an eagle during the final round. 

Gutzmer started slowly, bogeying the first hole to fall two behind, but things would get really interesting after that. There were five lead changes over the next 17 holes, beginning with a three-stroke swing at the 468-yard, par-4 second. Armstrong made a double bogey there, and Gutzmer birdied it. That put him in the lead, but Armstrong bounced back with birdies at the third (404 yards, par 4) and fourth (195, par 3), and he made two more birdies for a 34 on the front nine. Not to be outdone, Gutzmer birdied three of the last five holes on the front side and turned in 33.

So they headed for the 10th tee tied for the top spot at 7 under for the tournament. 

Gutzmer and Armstrong both bogeyed the 169-yard, par-3 11th hole, but then Gutzmer stuck his nose in front with a birdie at the 13th, a 415-yard par 4. Armstrong, having doubled the second hole of the day, achieved a bit of symmetry -- and regained the lead -- by making an eagle on the second-to-last hole, the 518-yard, par-5 17th. But Gutzmer made one more birdie, at the 18th (418 yards, par 4), to claim his half share of the conference crown.
The Johnnies' Berger finished third. He turned in a pair of 70's before a final-round 71 brought him in three behind Gutzmer and Armstrong at 211. Ben Frazinni of St. Thomas shot 74 on Sunday and ended up fourth, another three back at 214. The third St. John's player in the top five was Esten Stensrud, at 216. He tied for fifth with Jacob Pederson of Gustavus Adolphus (he shot 69 Sunday) and Mason Opheim of Concordia.
The rest of the Division II men’s national tournament field will be announced Monday.

6,997 YARDS, PAR 72
1. St. John’s Univ., 284-281-285—850
2. Univ. of St. Thomas, 286-290-288—864
3. Concordia College, 301-280-292—873
4. Gustavus Adolphus, 303-290-299—892
5. Bethel University, 302-297-297—896
6. St. Olaf College, 308-309-307—924
7. Carleton College, 312-310-305—927
8. Macalester College, 330-307-309—946
9. Augsburg University, 319-321-308—948
T1. Thomas Gutzmer, St. John’s, 71-69-68—208
T1. Matthew Armstrong, St. Thomas, 71-68-69—208
3. Sam Berger, St. John’s, 70-70-71—211
4. Ben Frazzini, St. Thomas, 69-71-74—214
T5. Jacob Pedersen, Gustavus Adolphus, 77-70-69—216
T5. Esten Stensrud, St. John’s, 72-72-72—216
T5. Mason Opheim, Concordia Coll., 74-66-76—216
8. Stellan Orvick, Augsburg Univ., 75-70-72—217
T9. Sam Henke, Concordia Coll., 74-79-67—220
T9. Peder Larson, St. Thomas, 70-77-73—220
T9. Glavine Schugel, St. John’s, 74-70-77—220
For complete tournament results, go to:  http://results.golfstat.com/public/leaderboards/gsnav.cfm?pg=team&tid=22427

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