UVU golf followers might be asking themselves, “Who is Mason Casper, and where was he during the fall season?”
It turns out that as the Wolverines made the turn at the end of the fall season, Casper was attending UVU as a student playing golf unattached to the university.
Due to some confusion with high school credits, Casper was ineligible to play with any NCAA Division I team until completing a full year of classes. After finishing a full year of classes, Casper was able to start practicing and competing with the Wolverines.
“It feels good to be officially part of the team,” said Casper. “I’ve been fortunate having been able to play a lot on my own the last year in tournaments unattached so that I was ready to perform this well already. It was a pretty awesome feeling to win my first colligate event.”
Casper’s first round of 5 under par, which was highlighted by his eagle on the par-5 12th hole, had him within striking distance of the leader at the end of the day. Casper would proceed to record a final round of 70 and finish 7 under par on the event, winning UVU’s first individual title since September of 2007.
“Mason’s win was huge,” said Coach Chris Curran. “To win in your first collegiate event is almost unheard of. He played very solid and had a very hot putter the whole tournament.”
Casper has high hopes for the program already and appears to be rubbing off on the rest of the team as the Wolverines finished third as a team, which is a season best.
“This is one of the best finishes in a long time,” said Curran. “It proves we can play with anyone in the country. I’m very proud of our guys. Even though Mason won, it was a team effort. The program is headed in the right direction. This is just the beginning of what our guys are capable of.”
Stratton Schulz continued right from where he left off last fall, shooting an even-par 72 for both rounds to finish 12th overall. Andrew Carlin did his best to contribute, also shooting a first-round 72 while finishing with a 2-over-par 74 to fall in a tie for 23rd.
“We worked this off-season on course management and playing high percentage golf,” said Curran. “We played very smart and executed the game plan.”
The Wolverines will tee it up again March 11-12 at the Bandon Dunes Championship in Bandon, Ore. where Curran looks to build off last week’s performance.