Eagle Golf Prepares for Championship Run
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STATESBORO, Ga. - The road to Stillwater, Okla. at Karsten Creek Golf Club for the 2011 NCAA Golf Championship begins September 6th in St. Andrews, Scotland as Georgia Southern Coach Larry Mays announced the 2010-11 schedule. The trip to Scotland for the International Collegiate and to Baton Rouge, La., for the David Toms Intercollegiate are the only tournaments new to a schedule that is otherwise consistent with last year's list of tournaments.
Highlighting the 10-tournament regular season schedule will be a trip to St. Andrews, Scotland; the birthplace of golf. The Eagles will compete September 6-7 in the International Collegiate at St. Andrews Bay in St. Andrews, Scotland. "Programs are allowed to go out of the country every four years so we are excited to be taking all 10 guys on our team to the birthplace of golf," stated Mays. "You get a lot of camaraderie out of the trip; the guys are together for a full week and they all get to play in a tournament, so it's a good way to start the season."
The Scotland trip allows the team to play against tough competition and enjoy a once-in-a lifetime experience. "For some guys this might be the only time they get to go to Scotland in their lives," said Mays. "They get to go see the historic golf courses and see where the traditions of the game started. We always talk about respecting the game, and this is a good way to show our players how it really started. They get a chance to play the historic golf courses in St. Andrews and compete in a tournament."
After returning to Scotland, the Eagles then attempt to defend their crown as two-time defending champions at the Spring Hill Suites Intercollegiate September 13-14. Last year, Spence Fulford carded a second round 9-under 63, a new tournament and competitive course record en route to an individual third-place finish. The experience the Eagles will gain at the Country Club of South Carolina will pay dividends in the spring when the course will play host to the SoCon Championships.
"We almost use it like a preview-type situation when we get to go play at The Country Club of South Carolina," stated Coach Mays. "Our new guys will play the course for the first time and our veterans have played in the conference championship and this tournament a few times. It's just about getting more rounds in and feeling more and more comfortable around that golf course."
For the second straight year, the Eagles will travel to Tampa, Fla., for the Gary Koch Intercollegiate at Old Memorial Golf Club October 2-3. The tournament provides families of two current players an opportunity to watch them play. "The Gary Koch is close to homes of Senior Logan Blondell and Freshman Drew Guffey," said Coach Mays. "Their parents live 45 minutes to an hour from the golf course. We have a number of players who live out of the state, so it's always a special time when they can play a tournament near home."
Georgia Southern will then host the Mizuno Savannah Intercollegiate October 11-12, to be played at the Savannah Quarters County Club in Savannah, Ga. "The course is always in great shape. The staff does a fantastic job of running the tournament. We really appreciate what they do for our program and as the tournament host."
Concluding fall competition will be the David Toms Intercollegiate October 18-19 at The Country Club of Louisiana in Baton Rouge, La. Last year's inaugural tournament marked the first home golf event for the LSU golf team in five years. "This tournament is one we haven't been to in six or seven years," said Mays. "The tournament was on hiatus for a few years after Hurricane Katrina and was brought back last year. There are many benefits to this trip, including experiencing the culture and great food. It's a good way to end the fall."
Georgia Southern will open its spring campaign with its 11th consecutive trip to Gainesville, Fla., for the Gator Invitational February 12-13 at the University of Florida Golf Club. "Not only is it a good golf course, this provides a good test for us to figure out where we are coming out of the offseason."
The Eagles return to the Sunshine State for the John Hayt Invitational February 27- March 1 at the Sawgrass Country Club in Ponte Vedra, Fla. "This tournament provides a good field on a good golf course at Sawgrass Country Club," stated Mays. "You should be set come the end of the school year towards regionals and nationals if you can play well at the John Hayt. It's a good measuring stick for later in the year."
The Cleveland Golf Palmetto Intercollegiate will take place March 7-8 at the Palmetto Golf Club in Akien, S.C. "It's a great golf course," said Coach Mays. "The first six holes are all tough par 4's. After players get through that tough stretch, the rest of the golf course seems easier to score on."
The 32nd Schenkel Invitational returns to Forest Heights Country Club March 18-20 in Statesboro, Ga. for the three-day tournament. Named after legendary golf announcer Chris Schenkel, the field includes many of the top teams in collegiate golf. Last year, 12 of the 15 teams in the field went on to the NCAA Tournament. "The field always consists of some of the best teams in college golf," said Mays. "It's a great honor to have the premier collegiate golf teams play in Statesboro every year and to have the community support that we are fortunate to have. The Schenkel Committee does a fantastic job of planning the tournament, making sure the tournament is run smoothly and taking care
of the golf teams once they arrive. We look forward to that event every year; it's just a special time of year."
The Eagles' regular season concludes at the 33rd Augusta State Invitational April 2-3 at Forest Hills Golf Club in Augusta, Ga. The tournament is held on the same golf course that witnessed Bobby Jones claim the Southeastern Open on his way to winning the Grand slam of Golf in 1930.
The team then returns to The Country Club of South Carolina April 17-19 for the Southern Conference Championship. The winner of that event earns an automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals.
"We hope to bring home another SoCon Championship. Our team has finished second three times in the last four years, so hopefully we can accomplish our goal of winning the conference this year," stated Mays.
- Category: Golf
- Published on Thursday, 05 August 2010 13:27