Kyttle earns top ten finish while Lions land fourth place in PSUAC finale

Kyttle steps into the tee box for his next shot.
Kyttle steps into the tee box for his next shot.

State College, Pa. - The Nittany Lion golf season came to a close on Tuesday with the conclusion of the second round of the concurrently run Penn State University Athletic Conference, United States Collegiate Athletic Association Championships held at the Penn State Blue Course. Monday's round saw Hazleton fire a team total of 360, forcing the squad to give chase behind Penn State Mont Alto who led the PSUAC teams with 328 strokes, followed by Penn State DuBois with 351 and Penn State Wilkes-Barre 357.

The Nittany Lions improved on day two by 13 strokes, but so did the remainder of the PSUAC field, leaving the Lions stranded in fourth position. Penn State Mont Alto emerged as the top squad in the field, equalling Hazleton's improvement of 13 to card a team total of 643 over two days. A 31 stroke improvement vaulted Wilkes-Barre into the silver spot, followed by a third place finish for Dubois who finished the two-day event with a combined score of 687. 

Penn State Lehigh Valley's Nick Engelman won the individual championship in the PSUAC, firing a pair of 73's for a total of 146 strokes. Not only did Engelman's efforts land the golfer a PSUAC title, but All-American status by the USCAA for his two over par performance.

Junior Zach Kyttle (Berwick, Pa.) led Hazleton over the course of two days, following up a round of 84 on Monday with an 85 on Tuesday. Kyttle battle difficulties off the tee on both days, but consistently recovered to keep big numbers off his card. After a plus eight first nine of 44 on Tuesday, the junior finished the championship with five pars on his turn home, carding a 41 that landed Kyttle a ninth place finish amongst PSUAC contenders. 

Freshman John Hawley (Mountain Top, Pa.) bounced back after an uncharacteristic round of 94 on Monday, besting his day one score by 10 shots. Like Hawley, freshman Geran Triano (Sugarloaf, Pa.) continued the trend of solid day-two score for the Lions, parring his final three holes of the day to finish with an 87. 

Rounding out the top Hazleton performances was sophomore Katie Behnert (Montandon, Pa.), the 2015 USCAA women's champion. Behnert ended day one atop the USCAA leaderboard in the women's division with round of 85, but the defending champion failed to build off Monday's fine performance, falling off the pace by nine strokes to finish in third place individually with a combined score of 176.

PSUAC Top 5 Team Results

1. Mont Alto - 643

2. Wilkes-Barre - 683

3. DuBois - 687

4. Hazleton - 707

5. New Kensington - 728