Though not the champions of 2011, the Cyclones ended a respectable season in the NJCAA Region IV Tournament Oct. 4-6 with improved play and a national qualifier in Jeremy Fraser (Lincoln-Way North).
The Cyclones placed seventh out of 10 teams in the tournament, and Fraser finished fifth overall (73, 77, 78) qualifying for the NJCAA Division II Championship in May. He actually led the field for the first two days of competition. “His ending scores might not seem impressive, but considering the weather conditions, he did really well,” said coach Bob Freudenthal. “In my 20 years coaching, this was the worst weather I can remember for this tournament. It was in the 40s with 20 to 30 mile-per-hour winds. It was awful.”
Fellow teammate Jack Misheck (Lincoln-Way North) missed the All-Region team by one stroke, hitting 83, 79 and 81. Dan Dermody (St. Laurence) steadily improved each day (89, 87, 83) followed by Shepard alum Pat Neylon (89, 92, 85).
Moraine Valley ended up in third in the Illinois Skyway Collegiate Conference, but had some big wins this season, including a first place finish in their home conference match and third in the Skyhawk Invitational. With Fraser being the lone returner from the 2011 squad, it was fitting that he qualified for nationals.
“He’ll represent us well at nationals. I’m happy for him. He worked hard and is very excited,” Freudenthal said. “Overall I’m proud of how the team played. I knew it would be tough with one returning player, but everyone improved throughout the season and it was a satisfying year.”
Fraser has until May 19 to prepare for the championships in Scottsboro, Ala.