CHINO HILLS, Calif. — If there is a barometer for where the University of La Verne men's golf team stands in its rebuild, a head-to-head matchup against the defending national champion and longtime SCIAC rival Claremont-Mudd-Scripps might be as good as any there is.
In a rare dual match on Friday, the Leopards showed they can hang with the best of them, losing to the Stags by just five shots at the Los Serranos Country Club South Course in Chino Hills. The Leopards shot a total of 294 in a play-6, score-4 format and the Stags shot 289 as a team.
Claremont-Mudd-Scripps is currently ranked third in the latest Golf Coaches Association of America poll.
"It's nice to close out the fall season with some better play against top competition," La Verne head coach Eric Riehle said. "We are motivated to have a productive winter and off-season to improve our consistency and compete for SCIAC championship in the spring."
Alec Spencer, the lone Leopard with championship experience, rose to the occasion as he has done all fall and claimed the individual win with a 5-under 67, four shots ahead of Alex Wrenn and Sidney Cozier (71) of CMS.
"Alec has been extremely impressive in all three fall events," Riehle said of Spencer. "His consistency has been remarkable."
But CMS had the decided edge in depth. Including Wrenn and Cozier, the Stags took second though fifth, placing all four of their scorers in the top-five. Harry Brenner shot a 1-over 73 and Austin Long shot a 2-over 74.
The Leopards are finished with their Fall season. They return to the course in Spring.
La Verne Men's Golf Fall Results
Sept. 19-20: California State Intercollegiate
Sept. 26-27: Western New Mexico University Fall Intercollegiate