Samuelian, men’s golf team looking to improve at Akron

If the Northern Illinois University men’s golf team was needing an example to follow, it’s available thanks to teammate Jason Samuelian.

The Huskie sophomore was simply outstanding in tying for fourth place individually in last weekend’s 23rd Annual Marshall University Invitational. April 18-19, Samuelian hopes to set the pace for the NIU contingent taking part in the University of Akron/Firestone Intercollegiate Invitational. The 54-hole tourney has grown into the largest (35 schools) collegiate meet and one of the country’s most competitive.

Samuelian carded rounds of 72, 73 and 72 for a 217 that helped bring his average to a team-best 75.9 per 18-hole round. Unfortunately, Samuelian was the Huskies’ lone bright spot as NIU finished last in the 18-school Marshall tourney.

“Jason hits the ball straight off the tee, he’s hitting a lot of greens, and he’s a good putter. Best of all, he’s only a sophomore. The way he’s playing this spring, I think another good tournament or two could help qualify him for regionals individually,” insisted veteran NIU coach Jack Pheanis. “As a team we’re having some problems. We’re working hard, so it’s not due to lack of effort, we just need a couple of breaks to get our confidence going.”

The Huskies were 29th in last year’s 35-school Akron field and with defending champion Indiana University back, along with ever-solid Kent State University, NIU can expect to find the competition every bit as tough this year.