Sophomore Jeff Chen fired a team-low 74 (+3) in Sunday's final round of the Robert Kepler Intercollegiate in Columbus, Ohio, securing his fourth top-25 finish in seven tournaments this season.

Irish Show Final-Round Improvement, Finishing 10th At Kepler Intercollegiate

April 12, 2009

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COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Notre Dame men’s golf team shot a final-round 305 (+21) and moved up one spot to finish 10th at the Robert Kepler Intercollegiate, which concluded Sunday on the Scarlet Course (par 71/7,455 yards) at the Ohio State Golf Club in Columbus, Ohio. The Irish completed the tournament at 77-over par 929 (309-315-305) on what was the longest course Notre Dame had played on all year.

Northwestern secured the team title with a final score of 892 (+40), two shots ahead of East Tennessee State in the 13-team field. Ohio State’s Brad Wright, who competed this weekend as an individual participant, walked away with medalist honors at five-over par 218, two strokes clear of Northwestern’s Josh Dupont.

Junior Doug Fortner (Tustin, Calif./Foothill) was Notre Dame’s top finisher at the Robert Kepler Intercollegiate, tying for 18th place at 14-over par 227 (72-80-75). It was Fortner’s third top-20 finish of the year and his highest since a season-best tie for fourth at last month’s Palmas del Mar Intercollegiate in Puerto Rico.

Sophomore Jeff Chen (Walnut, Calif./Los Altos) turned in the best individual score for the Irish during Sunday’s final round with a three-over par 74, moving into sole possession of 25th place at 16-over par 229 (78-77-74).

Meanwhile, the other three Notre Dame golfers were separated by a single stroke in the final standings. Junior co-captain Olavo Batista (Sao Paulo, Brazil/Chapel) tied for 55th place at 25-over par 238 (82-78-78). Junior Carl Santos-Ocampo (Naples, Fla./Community School of Naples) and freshman Tom Usher (Bradford, England/Guiseley School) tied for 59th place at 26-over par 239 with nearly identical round scores — Santos-Ocampo posted marks of 81-80-78, while Usher shot the exact reverse of his teammate’s scores with 78-80-81.

Notre Dame now sets its sights on the 2009 BIG EAST Conference Championship, which is slated to tee off next Sunday, April 19, in Dade City, Fla., on the South Course at the Lake Jovita Golf & Country Club. The Irish have won six BIG EAST titles in their first 13 years as a conference member, with their most recent championship coming in 2006 on that very same Lake Jovita South layout, when they shot a school-record 272 (-16) in the final round (and school-record 842/-22 for the tournament) to rally from 12 shots back and win on the first hole of a sudden death playoff.

Live scoring for this year’s BIG EAST Championship will be available through the Golfstat web site ( Complete results also will be posted on the official Notre Dame athletics web site ( and the Notre Dame Sports Hotline (574-631-3000) as soon as possible once each day’s scores are official.

— ND —

Robert Kepler Intercollegiate
April 11-12, 2009
Ohio State Golf Club/Scarlet Course (Columbus, Ohio)
Par 71/7,455 yards

FINAL 54-HOLE TEAM RESULTS: 1. Northwestern 892 (301-296-295); 2. East Tennessee State 894 (295-303-296); 3. Minnesota 900 (305-299-296); 4. Kent State 902 (300-299-303); 5. Ohio State 907 (297-309-301); 6. Middle Tennessee 914 (311-303-300); 7. Eastern Michigan 918 (308-299-311); 8. (tie) Iowa 920 (307-312-301) and Wisconsin 920 (308-305-307); 10. NOTRE DAME 929 (309-315-305); 11. Penn State 937 (316-310-311); 12. Temple 942 (310-309-323); 13. Marshall 949 (312-318-319).

TOP 4 INDIVIDUALS PLUS NOTRE DAME GOLFERS (of 74): 1. Brad Wright (OSU)* 218 (71-71-76); 2. Josh Dupont (NU) 220 (75-75-70); 3. (tie) Ben Pisani (MINN) 221 (78-71-72) and Seamus Power (ETSU) 221 (72-73-76); 18. (tie) Doug Fortner 227 (72-80-75); 25. Jeff Chen (ND) 229 (78-77-74); 55. (tie) Olavo Batista (ND) 238 (82-78-78); 59. (tie) Carl Santos-Ocampo (ND) 239 (81-80-78) and Tom Usher (ND) 239 (78-80-81).
* – individual participant; scores do not count toward team total