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Talon Supak finishes record-breaking season

July 22, 2016

Talon Supak finishes record-breaking season

Photographs courtesy of Tiffany Chin

To say it was a banner year for UIS men’s golfer Talon Supak would be an understatement. The junior from Washington, Illinois did what no individual golfer in the program had ever accomplished, as he won the NCAA Super Regional and represented the school in the NCAA Division II Golf Championships.

At the Division II National Golf Championships, held in Denver from May 17-19, Supak finished in a tie for 79th after shooting 10 over par for the tournament (75-76-75-226).

Supak’s remarkable season started off with the team’s second scheduled tournament of the year, the Wisconsin-Parkside Fall Invitational on September 14 and 15.

At the event, Supak’s first-round one-over 72 and second-round one-under 70 for an overall one-under-par 142 was good enough for the third-best two-round performance in school history.

Placing first in the individual field of 49, his play was also instrumental in the Prairie Stars winning the team tournament, their first since 2013-14, in the process.

In the 2015-16 campaign, Supak led the team and set UIS program records in total tournaments played (15), total rounds (33), average score (73.91), average score in relation to par (2.06), rounds in the 60’s (three), and rounds with finishes of par or better (11).

No event was more significant for the golfer and the program than the NCAA Super Regionals, held from May 2-4. After leading the Prairie Stars to the semi-finals of the GLVC Tournament two weeks beforehand, Supak was selected as an individual to compete in the Midwest Super Regionals.

There, in a seesaw battle with Bellarmine’s James Inman and Southeastern Oklahoma State’s Zach James, Supak’s five-over (70-71-77-218) was the equalizer as he won his second tournament of the season, becoming the first student-athlete in UIS history to win an NCAA regional.

In an interview with WICS 20 prior to the NCAA Championships, Supak put his history-making performance in the regionals in retrospective.

“It was scary coming into it because I knew I needed to get top-five at worst to make it at Nationals, [and] I didn’t expect to win, I knew I was playing well after the first two days and I was very nervous coming into the third round, but I got it done in the bad weather,” Supak said in the interview.

As a result of his record-breaking year, Supak was named to the first team all-GLVC, received Golf Coaches Association of America All-Region honors, and was named to the Division II Ping All-America Honorable Mention team.

“I know we’re a young program, as a golf team and as an athletic program, and I know just making it to Nationals, first athlete as an individual or as a team, I mean it’s huge for the program,” said Supak. “Hopefully we can grow it and I know for the golf program it’s really going to help us.”

Supak continued his successful play on the course into the summer with a T-18 finish in the Illinois State Amateur held from July 19 through July 21 at St. Charles Country Club in St. Charles, Illinois. Supak fired rounds of  69, 71, 73, and 73 to finish at two under par.

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