NIU men’s golf wins MAC Championship


Wes Sanderson

Men’s head golf coach John Carlson (Left) talks through a shot with then-senior Tommy Dunsire during the first round of the 2021 Saint Mary’s Invitational at Poppy Hills Golf Course in Pebble Beach, California. (Wes Sanderson | Northern Star)

By Eddie Miller, Sports Reporter

DeKALB – NIU men’s golf placed first at the MAC Championship, finishing four strokes ahead of Ball State University. The Huskies’ first place finish at the MAC Championship marked their first win at the tournament since 1985.

NIU finished the first day of the tournament in sixth place with a score of 295. The Huskies caught wind during the second round, jumping to first place with their tournament low score of 279. NIU rounded out the tournament matching its first round score of 295. 

The Huskies finished the tournament with a score of 869, five over par.

“It was a two team race for the last five holes,” said NIU men’s golf head coach John Carlson. “Credit to both Ball State and Kent State (University) for the match today.”

Senior Zach Place finished as NIU’s top golfer, placing fifth individually. Place opened the tournament shooting a 74 in the first round. He logged a score of 68 in the second round, matching his season low and picking up three eagles. Place finished the tournament with a score of 74, two over par. 

“Tommy (Dunsire) and I have played countless rounds together,” Place said. “Just grinding everyday.”

Graduate student Campbell Wolf had NIU’s second best finish, placing ninth. Wolf shot a 74 in the first round, but set his season low of 68 in the second round. Wolf rounded out the tournament, shooting a 76 in the third round. 

Placing tied for 10th place, graduate student Tommy Dunsire had the Huskies third-best finish. Dunsire finished the first round shooting a 71. Dunsire shot a 70 in the second round – earning him first place for the round – but fell after a score of 78 in the third round. 

“Just trying to play my best golf,” Dunsire said. “We just played for eachother … it was awesome.”

Sophomore Ben Sluzas had NIU’s fourth-best finish, placing tied for 13th. Sluzas finished day one with a score of 76, but shot a 73 in the second round. Sluzas finished the third round one under par, shooting a 71.

“Ben was due for a big round,” Carlson said. “Having played the best golf of his career at his last two tournaments at the (University of) Iowa and Ohio State (University).”

Freshman Ian Bruchhauser rounded out the Huskies’ line up, shooting 227 through three rounds. 


The Huskies will now compete in the NCAA Regional Tournament, an all day event starting May 15 and ending May 17. The location for the tournament is to be announced. Live scoring will be available on Golfstat