After a long flight to Texas, the Penn State men’s golf team lost a tough matchup.
The Nittany Lions arrived in Houston on Friday night following a nearly eight-hour trip. The next day, the team headed over to Jack Rabbit Course and fell to Michigan State, 2.5 to 1.
The day began with a singles match win for Penn State from freshman JD Dornes, earning a half point for the Nittany Lions.
Sophomore Xander McDonald-Smith and freshman Geoff Vartelas followed the win with a split in a four-ball match. The pair earned another half point for the team.
The following matches would not quite go the Lions way.
The pair made up of senior Anthony DeGol and sophomore Jens Talbert took their opponents to the 18th hole before dropping the hole and losing the match to the Spartans’ duo. Freshman Chris Houston and senior Jay Woodward lost their doubles match as well.
DeGol said in only the second match of the season, the team will use the match to identify its strengths and what it will need to work on moving forward.
“I definitely see the freshmen improving,” said DeGol, as Dornes and Vartelas — both freshmen — played key roles in the team’s only points.
Penn State’s schedule is considered difficult this year, but coach Greg Nye said at the team’s media day, “[the team] wanted that type of schedule.”
“It's a strong learning curve when you're playing against outstanding opponents,” Nye said. “That's what's driving us.”
The team will now head to South Carolina for the Colleton River Collegiate on March 6-7.