Eagle Golf Travels to SoCon Championships
STATESBORO, Ga. - The Georgia Southern Golf team, coming off a two-week break from competition, travels to Florence, S.C., for the 2011 Southern Conference Golf Championships April 17-19th. The Country Club of South Carolina, a par 72, 7,062-yard layout, plays host to the 11-team field for the fifth consecutive year.
"We are excited to once again compete for a SoCon title," said Head Coach Larry Mays. "We have had a very inconsistent year and will need a good performance this week to bring home the trophy."
Georgia Southern looks to capture its third SoCon title, having won the championship in 2003 and 2006. The Eagles finished in second place the past two years, finishing behind Furman in 2010 and Chattanooga in 2009.
Both of those years, GSU earned a bid to the NCAA Regionals. Last season, the Eagles were the lone SoCon team of three to make it out of its regional and advance to the NCAA Championships for the 15th time.
Last year in the SoCon Championships, Ryan Zabroske shot a 3-under 69 in the final round to finish tied for fifth. Spence Fulford, who set a tournament and course record on the same course earlier in the 2010 season with a 9-under 63 at the Spinghill Suites Intercollegiate, finished in a ninth-place tie at 217 (+1).
Georgia Southern used its fall season in recent years to help prepare for the SoCon Championships at The Country Club of South Carolina. Georgia Southern has played on the course previously at the SoCon Championships as well as at Francis Marion's tournament, the Springhill Suites Intercollegiate. The Eagles won two of three titles at the Springhill Suites, the last in 2009. This winning attitude and familiarity with the course has helped Georgia Southern soar to nine top-three finishes in the last 10 years.
"We have competed well at this golf course over the past few years, both in the SoCon and at Francis Marion's fall event," said Mays. "So it's a golf course that we feel comfortable on and have good memories to build on."
GSU travels Logan Blondell (Lakeland, Fla.), Florian Sander (Bregenz, Austria), Lewis Gruber (Tallahassee, Fla.), Hayden Anderson (Knoxville, Tenn.) and Matt Deal (Statesboro, Ga.) to the tournament.
Three of the five players (Sander, Deal and Blondell) walk into the clubhouse with experience at the SoCon Championships. Both Sander and Deal participated in the field last season. Sander, playing as a redshirt freshman, concluded the tournament with a 3-over 219 for a 15th-place tie while Deal finished one shot behind in a tie for 19th.
Logan Blondell (Lakeland, Fla.) competed as a sophomore and freshman at the SoCon Championship, finishing fourth in 2009 and tied for 12th in 2008, respectively. In his last appearance, Blondell, 2009 SoCon Player of the Year, closed out the tournament 4-under 212 (71-70-71), two strokes off the lead.
Anderson is the lone Eagle without experience at this course. Gruber has played three rounds on the course this fall at the Springhill Suites Intercollegiate. The junior carded a 1-under 215 (73-66-76) to finish in a tie for seventh place.
"The key for us this week is to play three solid rounds and not have the one bad round that has been hurting us all year," stated Mays. "A team effort will be needed if we are to accomplish our goal of a championship."
The 75th SoCon Golf Championship gets underway Sunday morning at 9 a.m. Georgia Southern will tee off on the first tee at 9:50 a.m. The Eagles are paired with UNC Greensboro and Furman for the first round.
The Southern Conference Men's Golf Championship has been played every season since 1933, aside from a four-year hiatus during World War II, and the event boasts past champions such as Arnold Palmer (1948-49) and Brad Faxon (1983). The winner of the SoCon Championship will earn the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Regional while the individual medalist will also earn an automatic regional qualification.
Fans can follow hole-by-hole live scoring of the 75th SoCon Golf Championship at http://golfstatresults.com/public/index.cfm?tournament_id=2204.
Follow the Eagle Golf team on GeorgiaSouthernEagles.com/golf or get short updates on facebook.com/GSAthletics or twitter.com/GSAthletics.
- Category: Golf
- Published on Saturday, 16 April 2011 14:01