MOBILE, Ala. –The Kansas State men’s golf team started the 2022 spring season on a high, as the Wildcats shot a par 859 5-under to finish in fourth place at Mobile Bay Intercollegiate on Tuesday.

Magnolia Grove Crossings Golf Course saw K-State close out the second round with a par 290 2-over before the Cats could rally and cement the top five by totaling a par 284 4-under in the third round.

K-State finished just one stroke behind No. 20 Illinois, while the Wildcats recorded a victory over No. 28 Kent State, who finished in ninth place. It was the 13th top-five finish for the Wildcats in the past four seasons and third in the 2021-22 season.

“Overall it was a good ending for us,” the head coach said. Grant Robin noted. “I thought we were very solid off the tee and into the greens. We just weren’t sharp enough with the short game.

“We have a pretty young team, and we have to keep working to get comfortable under par and learn how to finish those rounds,” Robbins said. “It will come with experience, and I know we will continue to improve.”

Tim Tillmans led the way for K-State, finishing in a tie for seventh place at 4 under par 212. Despite a tie for 15th place at the end of the second round, the experienced Tillmanns were able to fight back with a 3 under final round by 69 to return to the top 10. It was his sixth career top 10 and his third of the season.

“I was really proud of Tim,” Robbins said. “He started the day with a triple bogey on his first hole and showed a lot of mental toughness to bounce back.”

Tillmanns is no stranger to the championship season as he was the 14th Wildcat to qualify for an NCAA region when he did last year. This performance should signal another strong spring for the junior from Cologne, Germany.

Next in the standings for K-State, tied for 13th at 2-under 214, was a freshman Nicklaus Mason, who earned his second career top 15 in just his fourth career appearance. Mason finished his second round with a par 70 2-under before putting the finishing touches on his performance with a par 71 1-under the final round.

Another freshman, Laurenz Schiergenwho made his Wildcat debut after joining the team in the half, finished tied for 23rd at an even par 216. Schiergen shot a 1-under par 71 third round to move up six spots and break into the top-25.

Will Hopkinsa senior, recorded a 3-over by 75 in the last 18 as he tied for 37th on 3-over by 219. Behind him was Luke O’Neilla sophomore, tied for 45th at 5 on the par 221 after a 1 on the par 73 in the third round.

Cooper Schultza redshirt freshman who was competing as an individual, tied for 28th at 1 by 217 after shooting a final round at 2 by 74. Schultz’s performance at the Mobile Bay Intercollegiate was highlighted by the sensational 3-under-par 69 opening round he staged on Monday.

Florida State took the tag team victory with a dramatic return to top No. 49 UAB. The Seminoles were 17 shots off the lead heading into the third round before landing a par 273 15-under in the last 18 to finish in first place at a par 848 16-under. UAB senior Nick Robillard was the individual champion at 11-under 205.

Kansas State will look to build on that practice outing as the Wildcats begin a three-week hiatus before returning south March 7-8 for the Colleton River Intercollegiate in Bluffton, South Carolina.

“They’re a very talented group,” Robbins said. “We just have to keep improving.”