Iowa State men's golf heads to the Badger Invitational for the teams' second tournament of the fall season on Sunday.
The Cyclones will golf three rounds at University Ridge Golf Course, completing the tournament on Tuesday. The Cyclones come off an eighth-place finish in their first tournament of the season. Iowa State head coach Andrew Tank felt the team showed several areas of strength at their first tournament.
"I feel like we did a lot of good things and I was really happy with our preparation for the event. I feel like there's a lot of positives to build on going forward," Tank said.
Three Cyclone individuals finished in the top-30 at the Gopher Invitational. The team finished with a score of +15. Among the positives, according to Tank, was the mental aspect of the game.
"I saw a lot of good decisions being made out there," Tank said.
For Frank Lindwall, a senior on the Iowa State team, the mental game is a two-step process.
"The first part is to kind of map out the course and identify good spots that you want to place your ball," Lindwall said. The second part, according to Lindwall, is staying committed to the good spots and not taking unnecessary risks.
Lindwall is among multiple Cyclones with experience golfing at this weekend's venue.
University Ridge Golf Course, just outside Madison, Wisconsin, plays host to the Badger Invitational. The home course of the Wisconsin Badgers is similar in style to the Cyclones' practice facility and The Harvester golf course just outside of Ames.
"We know the golf course really well. A lot of us have played it many times," Lindwall said.
Lachlan Barker also has experience with the course. When knowing the course, priorities can shift to specific areas.
"In Minnesota, I drove it well, I hit it well, and I chipped it well. The difference for me in Minnesota was putting," Barker said. The senior is looking to use his practice round in Madison to get a feel for the greens and improve his putting.
Lindwall and Barker both moved up on the leaderboard in the final round at the Gopher Invitational two weeks ago. The Iowa State seniors finished in the top 25 in a field with multiple high-major programs such as Kanas, Michigan State and Notre Dame.
Iowa State is one of 13 teams competing at the Badger Invitational. Among the competition will be Sam Houston State and Cincinnati, two teams that won their first competitions of the year.
"The cool thing about golf is there are a lot of strong mid-major programs. And that's really our goal is to compete against the best teams, and we're looking forward to it," Andrew Tank said.
According to Lachlan Barker, the Iowa State team does not shy away from the opportunity to compete against successful opponents.
"The Big 12, it's the strongest golf conference out there, so we, week in, week out, always play a good field. By now, it's something that we've gotten used to," Lachlan Barker said.
"I think the team that plays smart and limits the big mistakes is going to be at the top of the leaderboard at the end," Andrew Tank said.