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NEAR PERFECT FINISH LETS KCKCC’s MULLEN SHARE MEDALIST HONORS

NEAR PERFECT FINISH LETS KCKCC’s MULLEN SHARE MEDALIST HONORS

Blake Mullen is 2-for-2 in his first full golf season at Kansas City Kanas Community College.

            A sophomore from Olathe East, Mullen came from four shots back to tie for medalist honors in the Bethel Spring Invitational Saturday and Sunday. The comeback helped KCKCC vault into second place in the six-team tournament. The first 18 holes were played at the par 71 Hesston Municipal Golf Park; the final 18 at the par 72 Sand Creek Station in Newton.

            Mullen's first place tie came on the heels of his win in the Evangel Spring Invitational in Springfield, Mo., March 8-9. The Blue Devils resumed action Monday, playing in a Jayhawk Conference designated tournament at Colbert Hills in Manhattan.

            Mullen was in fourth place and four strokes back after an opening 4-over par 75 at Hesston Saturday but roared down the stretch with the tournament's best round on Sunday, a 2-under 70 at Sand Creek Station. The 70 enabled Mullen to share medalist honors with Bryan Cowan of Fort Hays, who had rounds of 71 and 74.

            "The second day Blake played near perfect golf with just one bogey," said KCKCC Coach Gary Shrader. "On Saturday, he had 35 putts in shooting 75 but could have posted a 67 if the makeable putts had gone in."

            Four Blue Devils finished in the Top 12 in medalist play led by freshman Carson Towey of Bishop Carroll, who tied for eighth thanks to a final round 74 after an opening 82.  "Solid rounds for a freshman," said Shrader. Sophomores Keegan Ellington of Andover Central tied for 10th (79-78-157) and Mark Towey finished 12th (79-79-158),

            Freshman Colby Unruh of Overland Park tied for 16th (80-81-161), Jacob Hall of Tonganoxie was alone in 18th (84-78-162); and Dyland Freund of Cheney was 24th (85-82-167).

            "We played both Hesston and Sand Creek without practice rounds but were able to keep the ball in play," said Shrader. "It was also our only dry rounds of play this spring. As a team, we were able to shoot some rounds in the 70's."

            Third after the opening round, the Blue Devils turned in the day's best round of 301 to climb into second place (313-301-614) behind Fort Hays State (300-305-605). Kansas Wesleyan was third (617) followed by two Kansas Wesleyan teams and Hesston.