Updated: 05/05/2014 5:22 PM
Created: 05/05/2014 3:58 PM KSTP.com
By: Nick Tabbert
Led by freshman Jose Mendez, the University of Minnesota men's golf team dominated the Big Ten Championships and took home its first title since 2007 Sunday in French Lick, Indiana.
Mendez shared the individual title with Illinois sophomore Charlie Danielson, Minnesota's first individual champion since 2003.
Minnesota finished with a team score of 34 over par at the Pete Dye Course at the French Lick Resort, four shots ahead of Illinois and eight ahead of Iowa. The Gophers enjoyed a seven-stroke lead heading into the final round and held off a late Illini run.
Mendez finished 1 over par after four rounds of play. He saw a three-stroke lead vanish on Sunday but recovered to tie with Danielson.
Senior John Trasamar finished third overall, five shots behind Mendez. Both players made the Big Ten All-Championships Team.
With the outright victory, the team advances to the NCAA Regionals in Raleigh, North Carolina, at the Lonnie Poole Golf Course May 15-17. The Gophers are the No. 11 seed in the 12-team tournament.
The top five teams from each of the six regional tournaments will advance to the NCAA Championships. The low individual not from those five teams will also advance.
The other teams in the Raleigh field are Georgia Tech, Washington, Florida State, Texas A&M, Mercer, Kentucky, Texas Tech, Wake Forest, South Alabama, Memphis, Rice and Bethune-Cookman.
Minnesota's last team appearance at the NCAA Regionals was in 2009. The Gophers placed seventh in Galloway, New Jersey.