Kane Ybarra shines at NAIA Championship and finishes in 10th place

Star golfer Kane Ybarra placed 10th at the 69th Annual NAIA Men’s Golf National Championship at TPC Deere Run. He shot a four-round 290 (73, 73, 74, 70).

The individual medalist was Corey Matthey, who also was an individual qualifier. He shot a four-round 280.

Head Coach Arnie Martinez commented, “It was great to see Kane play well. This course was not to e taken lightly. The rough was long, the greens were fast, and it was some of the wettest conditions I’ve ever seen throughout the tournament. Four days is a lot of golf, and Kane grinded on every stroke. It was a  pleasure to watch him play all week. I know his goal was to win, but finishing 10th individually out of over 150 players is something to be very proud of. It was a great finish for a great player. He’s going to be hard to replace. He’s helped elevate OLLU golf to a higher level, and for that, I thank him. It’s been a heck of a ride. Congrats, Kane.”

Top Fifteen Final Individual Scores 

1 Corey Matthey, Morningside (Iowa) – 280

T2 Ben Rebne, Dalton State (Ga.) – 284

T2 Logan Smith, William Woods (Mo.) – 284

4 Beng Keat Lim, Ottawa (Ariz.) – 286

T5 Hunter Clay, Reindhardt (Ga.) – 288

T5 Ruan Pretorius, Point (Ga.) – 288

T7 Eric Wowor, Point (Ga.) – 289

T7 Javan Johnson, Taylor (Ind.) – 288

T7 Troy Watson, Kansas Wesleyan – 288

10 Kane Ybarra, Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) – 290

T11 Javier Neira Garcia, Keiser (Fla.) – 291

T11 Steve Kibare, Dalton State (Ga.) – 291

T13 Jacob Thomas, South Carolina Beaufort – 292

T13 Tyron Davidowitz, Texas Wesleyan – 292

T15 Taylor Beckstead, Texas Wesleyan – 292

T15 Sentanio Minnie, Wayland Baptist (Texas) – 293

T15 Alberto Uriach, Webber International (Fla.) – 293

T15 Florian Benner, Keiser (Fla.) – 293

T15 Hugo Ronnberg, Bellevue (Neb.) – 293

This marks the highest finish for a men’s golfer who competed as an individual. In 2012, the Saints team made it to the finals and placed seventh overall, while Aaron Flores took sixth place. The following year, the Saints once again took seventh place, while Flores was the NAIA’s runner-up.

In 2017, the team grabbed 15th place, and in 2018, the Saints came out in 21st place, while Rafael Jauregui went on to the finals finishing in 33rd place. In the 2019 season, the Saints took 36th place, but Steve Landry qualified for the finals, where he placed 38th. Unfortunately, the 2020 season was canceled due to COVID-19

OLLU celebrates the accomplishments of Ybarra, who has had a highly successful five years from 2016 through 2021 that encompasses achievements both in the classroom and out on the course. They include:

  • 5-time NAIA Scholar Team
  • 2-time NAIA All-American
  • NAIA-PING All-American
  • NAIA PING All-Region
  • 4-time All-Conference
  • Conference Player of the Year
  • Conference Newcomer of the Year
  • Conference Freshman of the Year
  • 5 Golfer of the Week awards
  • 5-year Conference Scholar-Athlete
  • 2-time Top Saint for Golf
  • 3 first-place finishes
  • 9 top-five finishes
  • 10 top-10 finishes
  • Earned his Bachelor of Business in Business Marketing

The Saints will get set for their 14th season in 2021-2022. They will play a handful of tournaments in the fall and then play their official season in the spring of 2022.