Illinois repeats as Big Ten champions
(University of Illinois Photo)
NEWBURGH, IN (April 24, 2016) - Wow is the only word that comes to mind when you look at what No. 2 Illinois did on the final day of the Big Ten Championship. Illinois (838) has repeated as Big Ten champions thanks to a remarkable 24-under final round. It was their seventh championship win in eight years. The Illini turned an eight-stroke deficit into a 13 shot win over second round leader Iowa (851).
One day after nobody in the Illinois lineup was able to break par at Victoria National Golf Club all five players finished at least 4-under during the final round. What might be even more remarkable is that the five Illini players combined for just six bogeys and one double-bogey in 90 holes of play on Sunday. The final round team score of 264 was the lowest score in program history.
"This is huge for our seniors," Illinois head coach Mike Small said of the Illini victory. "These have been the best four years of Illinois Golf and they have been a part of it. For Thomas to win today, now we have three Big Ten Champions on our team. The way we handled adversity yesterday was not our team. We had to get back to who we are, and I think they saw that. We had a good, long gut-check last night and talked about a lot of things. I'm proud of all of them. To throw out a 4-under par is pretty strong. This was a special day, it really was."
Seniors Thomas Detry (-10) and Charlie Danielson (-9) led the comeback finishing one-two in the individual standings. Detry shot a final round 8-under 64 and became the sixth consecutive Illinois medalist winner. His round included seven birdies, an eagle and one bogey. Detry didn't wait long to start the Illinois run going birdie-eagle-birdie on holes 2-4.
"It mean's a lot, it was a lot of fun to battle it out with Charlie (Danielson), but getting that individual title means a lot to me, especially as a senior," Thomas Detry said of his medalist win. "Walking off the course with the Big Ten title is huge. Not only that, but the team title is a major accomplishment. We were chasing today, but everyone got off to a great start and got after it. There were great vibes out on the course and this morning when we woke up. Everyone played well today and I think we all had fun."
It was a complete team effort for Illinois on this memorable Sunday. Sophomore Dylan Meyer (-2) tied for ninth, freshmen Edoardo Lipparelli (+1) was tied for 17th and sophomore Nick Hardy (+2) was a part of a group tied for 20th.
Rounding out the top-5 team standings are Maryland (866) in third, Michigan (867) and Michigan State (867) in a fourth place tie.
-Illinois athletics contributed to this story
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54 hole men's collegiate championship of the
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