UCSB’s golf team extended its run of outstanding performances this season, finishing fifth, out of 15 teams, at the 2008 University of San Diego Callaway Golf Invitational at Rancho Santa Fe. The Gauchos shot an 888, 13 shots behind fourth-place Arkansas, and 35 shots behind the tourney title winner, Wichita State. The final round was played Tuesday.

Sophomore Matt Grush shot a 2-over par 218 to finish in a tie for 11th place, and freshman Tyler Weir recorded a 3-over par 219 to tie for 14th.

Grush was consistent for all three rounds of the event, shooting 72, 73 and 73. Weir opened the tourney with a 2-over par 74, but closed it out by shooting a 1-over par 73 and then an at-par 72 in the final two rounds.

Michael Casca, a freshman from Oaks Christian High, shot 10-over par 226 to finish in a tie for 36th. Junior Tony Verna struggled in the final round with an 82, but he finished at 15-over par 231, tying for 58th. Sophomore Brian Hollenbeck, UCSB’s top player all year, finished with a 15-over par 236, tying him for 68th place.

The team title was won by Wichita State, which shot an 853, eight shots over host USD. The Shockers were also nine shots better than St. Mary’s, and 22 better than Arkansas. The Gauchos were fifth, 35 shots out.

The individual championship was taken by Wichita State’s Dustin Garza, who shot a 6-under par 210. St. Mary’s junior Joshua Kelly recorded a 4-under par 212 to finish second.

Another finisher of interest included Utah‘s Dustin Pimm, who ended up in a tie for eighth with a 1-over par 217. Pimm is the grandson of former UCSB basketball coach and Hall of Famer Jerry Pimm.

With final exams on the horizon, UCSB will take the next two weeks off. The Gauchos return to the course March 26, when they play in the Western Intercollegiate, hosted by San Jose State at Pasatiempo Golf Course in Santa Cruz.

The Gauchos will host the Ogio/Pacific Coast Intercollegiate at Rancho San Marcos Golf Course on March 31 and April 1.

Bill Mahoney is UCSB‘s assistant athletics director.