Luke Donald is just one of three Illinois players in their year’s Masters field. The other two – Kevin Streelman and D.A. Points – are in the field for the first time since making their tournament debuts in 2011.
Streelman (75-74) and Points (72-76) both failed to survive the 36-hole cut in their Masters debuts, and they’re coming into this one with different preparations.
Points should be tired. He qualified for the Masters by winning the Shell Houston Open two weeks ago. Rather than take a week off he opted to fulfill a commitment to play in the Valero Texas Open last week. He tied for 53rd place there – his sixth straight week of tournaments and his 11th event in the first three months of the year.
Streelman also played the week after his win, at last month’s Tampa Bay Championship, and tied for 21st at the Arnold Palmer Invitational. He rested in Arizona the last two weeks while the tour was competing in Texas.
FIRST LOCAL EVENT: Donald’s coach, Pat Goss, will divide his attention between helping Donald and preparing his Northwestern men’s team for one of its biggest tournaments of the season.
On Monday, the day after the Masters, Goss’ Wildcats will host 13 other teams in the Kemper Sports Intercollegiate at The Glen Club in Glenview. It’ll be the first significant competition of the Chicago season and the Wildcats’ last tuneup for the Big Ten Championship April 26-28 at French Lick, Ind.
NU’s tournament has a big Illinois flavor, with the field also including DePaul, Loyola, Chicago State, Bradley, Northern Illinois, Illinois State and Western Illinois. Marquette, Indiana-Purdue Indianapolis, Dayton, Ohio, Ohio State and St. John’s round out the field for the event that calls for 36 holes on Monday and 18 on Tuesday.
IPGA DEBUT: First event of the Illinois PGA tournament season is Monday – the Spring Pro-Assistants team competition at Bolingbrook Golf Club.
The Chicago District Golf Assn. opens its season on April 23 with the Better Ball of Pairs event at The Glen Club.