Eagles Look to Defend Title at Springhill Suites Intercollegiate
Francis Marion University will host the 25th-annual intercollegiate tournament, a 54-hole event that will play 36 holes on the opening day and the final 18 on Tuesday. Play will begin on the par 72, 7,062 yard course on Monday with a shotgun start at 8 a.m.
The 17-team field includes: Francis Marion (host), Appalachian State, College of Charleston, Charleston Southern, Davidson, Elon, Furman, George Mason, Georgia College & State, James Madison, Presbyterian College, Radford, Samford, USC Aiken, USC Upstate, Western Carolina, and defending champion, Georgia Southern.
The starting lineup for the Eagles includes Logan Blondell, Spencer Fulford, Joe Monte, Florian Sander and Ryan Zabroske. Matt Deal will also make the trip, competing as an individual.
“As the defending champion, we want to go up there, defend our title and put up a good showing,” said head coach Larry Mays. “The tournament has a solid field competing and we have a lot of our conference foes in it. It is a unique tournament in that the whole team plays together for the first 36 holes. It is a good team chemistry builder to have all the guys playing together and getting them to work together as a team.”
Georgia Southern and the seven other conference schools competing in the tournament will get its first look at the site of the 2010 Southern Conference Championship which will take place at the Country Club of South Carolina in April.
“This tournament acts as a preview for us because our conference tournament is contested on the same course at the end of the year, which explains why there are seven other Southern Conference schools in the field. It is a good warm-up for all of us to give our guys three more rounds on the golf course,” Mays stated on the advantage of the tournament being at the Country Club of South Carolina.
In addition to the benefit of playing the course, the Eagles will also have their first look at seven of the conference schools that will challenge for the SoCon title in April. “We will be able to eye them up a little bit, see what the new guys bring to the teams and where they stand,” said Mays. “It will be a good preview for the SoCon and it also allows our guys to see where they stack up against the other conference schools early in the year.”
The Eagles are coming off a season-opening 11th-place tie at Golfweek’s Conference Challenge two weeks ago. Senior Zabroske nabbed his first collegiate ‘top 5’ finish, tying for fifth with a career tournament-low 214. The Alpharetta, Ga., native paced Georgia Southern in the tournament, posting scores in the red over the final two rounds en route to his best collegiate showing.
“We do need to rebound a little bit after getting off on the wrong foot in Iowa. The first round put us in a hole and we climbed back a little bit, but not enough to be satisfied. We will definitely get better as I think we are refocused as a team. The guys know we made some mistakes in the first tournament and we’ve already taken the time to address some of those,” said Mays on the Eagles’ first showing at Golfweek’s Conference Challenge.
- Category: Golf
- Published on Sunday, 13 September 2009 12:31