Oct. 10, 2004
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The #16/23 Tigers make their way to St. Charles, Mo. for their third tournament of the fall at the Missouri Bluffs Challenge hosted by the University of Missouri. Sunday, October 10 will consist of practice rounds and the tournament will be played on Monday and Tuesday, October 11-12.
The tournament will be 54 holes, 36 to be played on Monday and 18 on Tuesday. There will be both a morning and afternoon round on Monday and just a morning round on Tuesday. The morning rounds will begin at 8:00 a.m. each day.
Tournament Field (12)
Arkansas State, Austin Peay, Drake, Iowa State, Lamar, Loyola Marymount, Memphis, Miami (Ohio), Missouri, North Texas, Southwest Missouri State, Saint Louis.
The Tigers will be looking to make it three tournament wins in three starts this year. They are coming off a seven-stroke win at the Memphis Intercollegiate, where they rallied from a four-stroke deficit going into the third round to win. They were also four strokes down entering the final round at the Radrick Farms Intercollegiate at Michigan in September and tied for first with two other teams.
Memphis will also look to make it three individual medalists in as many events this week. Allan Thomas won medalist honors at the Memphis Intercollegiate, shooting a 2-under par 214 (77-70-67) to win by two strokes. He was the only player to shoot under par for the tournament and also was tied with one other player for the low round of the tournament with his final round 5-under 67. His win followed up a win by Keven Fortin-Simard at the Radrick Farms Intercollegiate, where he shot 5-under par to win the tournament and was the only player to shoot under par in all three rounds.
Fortin-Simard leads the Tigers so far this year with a 71.3 stroke average per round. Justin Miers is second with a 72.5 and Thomas lowered his average to 73.2 with his two subpar rounds at the Memphis Intercollegiate. Shiels owns a stroke average of 74. The next lowest is freshman Ian Rochester, who played as an individual in the last tournament and averaged a 75.7.
About the Tournament Field
Arkansas State: The Indians have played in three tournaments and sixth place has been their best finish. Tommy Murray has been the team's top finisher in two of the tournaments so far, finishing 18th at the Cardinal Intercollegiate and tied for 14th at the Mean Green Classic, while Ryan Knoll finished tied for 25th at the Raising Cane Classic.
Finishes: Cobb/Ferrell Mean Green Classic (North Texas) - 6th of 14
Raising Cane Classic (Southern Miss) - 14th of 15
Cardinal Intercollegiate (Louisville) - T15th of 19
Austin Peay: Like Memphis, this will be just the third tournament of the fall for the Governors. Freshman Grant Leaver leads the team with a 74.0 stroke average and a low round of 70. He was their top finisher in 25th at the Raising Cane Classic while Justin Metzger was APSU's top finisher at the Cardinal Intercollegiate.
Finishes: Raising Cane Classic (Southern Miss) - 12th of 15
Cardinal Intercollegiate (Louisville) - T11th of 19
Drake: The Bulldogs have played in three tournaments so far this year, and junior Jeff Berkshire has been the top finisher for them in all three events, including a tie for second at the Hawkeye Intercollegiate. He also finished tied for sixth and ninth at the other events. Drake finished ahead of Wisconsin, who tied with Memphis at the Radrick Farms Intercollegiate, at the Hawkeye Intercollegiate.
Finishes: Fairway Club Invitational (Nebraska) - T3rd of 12
Northern Intercollegiate (Wisconsin) - T10th of 13
Hawkeye Intercollegiate (Iowa) - 3rd of 9
Iowa State: For the second straight week, the Cyclones will be competing with Memphis in the same tournament, only this will be the fourth tournament of the year for ISU and only the third for Memphis. The Cyclones' best finish of the year came at the weather-shortened Adams Cup in Newport, R.I. when they finished 7th. Chris Baker and Drew Dalziel have been the top two finishers for Iowa State in all three tournaments.
Finishes: Notre Dame Invitational (Notre Dame) - 15th of 15
Adams Cup (Rhode Island) - 7th of 13
Memphis Intercollegiate (Memphis) - 11th of 16
Lamar: The Cardinals qualified for the NCAA Central Regional last year and have already won one tournament this year at the Baylor Invitational out of its three starts. Dawie Van Der Walt was the individual medalist the Baylor tournament and shot a low round of 66. He also leads the Cardinals in stroke average with a 71.29.
Finishes: Mid-Pines Intercollegiate (UNC-Greensboro) - 3rd of 17
Baylor Invitational (Baylor) - 1st of 9
Stonebridge Invitational (SMU) - 8th of 16
Loyola Marymount: The Lions come to the Midwest from the west coast with two tournaments under their belt. Freshman Jason D'Amore has been their top finisher in both tournaments, including a first-place finish at the Vandal Classic in which he set a school record by shooting a 10-under par 203 to win the tournament by 16 strokes. His score included a second round 64. He qualified for the U.S Amateur Championship this past summer.
Finishes: Gold Rush (UCLA) - 25th of 30
Vandal Fall Classic (Idaho) - 4th of 9
Miami (Ohio): The Redhawks will be competing with Memphis for the second time this year, as both teams also played at the Radrick Farms Intercollegiate. However, this will be their fifth and final tournament of the fall. Ryan Swelin has been their best finisher in two of their four tournaments while Mike Calkin finished tied for second in their last tournament, the Earl Yestingsmeier Intercollegiate, where the Redhawks finished second as a team.
Finishes: Radrick Farms Intercollegiate (Michigan) - t9th of 14
Northern Intercollegiate (Wisconsin) - 4th of 13
Cardinal Intercollegiate (Louisville) - T11th of 19
Earl Yestingsmeier Intercollegiate (Ball State) - 2nd of 18
Missouri: The Tigers will be competing against Memphis for the third time this fall. However, this is Mizzou's fourth tournament of the fall, and just the third for Memphis. Ben Scott finished in sixth place at the Radrick Farms Intercollegiate, the highest individual finish for a Mizzou golfer in an event so far. Chris Mabry leads the team with a 75.67 stroke average.
Finishes: Radrick Farms Intercollegiate (Michigan) - 12th of 14
Notre Dame Invitational (Notre Dame) - 13th of 15
Memphis Intercollegiate (Memphis) - 14th of 16
North Texas: This will be just the third tournament of the fall for the Mean Green, who last competed the last weekend of September. Andreas Kali-Nilsson leads UNT with a 73.6 stroke average and has been their top individual finisher in both tournaments.
Finishes: Cobb/Ferrell Mean Green Classic (North Texas) - 2nd of 14
Adams Cup (Rhode Island) - 13th of 13
Southwest Missouri State: This will be the fourth tournament of the year for the Bears, whose best team finish was in second place in their last tournament, the Hawkeye Intercollegiate. At that tournament, Austin Hackett won individual medalist honors by shooting a 209 (70-69-70). He also leads the team with a 73.6 stroke average.
Finishes: Fairway Club Invitational (Nebraska) - T6th of 12
Baylor Invitational (Baylor) - 5th of 9
Hawkeye Intercollegiate (Iowa) - 2nd of 9
Saint Louis: This will also be the fourth tournament of the year for the Billikens, the other C-USA school in the field. SLU's best finish so far came at the John Dallio Memorial in Chicago, where they finished second. David Perritt has been the top finisher for the Billikens in all three of their tournaments and leads SLU with a 73.8 stroke average.
Finishes: Harris Fall Classic (SEMO) - 6th of 12
Kansas Invitational (Kansas) - 12th of 13
John Dallio Memorial (DePaul) - 2nd of 13
Located in St. Charles, Mo., a suburb of St. Louis and about 90 miles east of Missouri's campus in Columbia, this Tom Fazio designed course opened in 1995. Its zoysia fairways and bentgrass greens are surrounded by natural surroundings of trees, some of which are hundreds are years old. The par 71, 7,047 yard course is full of hill and steep terrain.
Tigers Freshmen Ranked Top in Country
The freshman class has been named the top freshman class in the country in Golfstat's Top 25 Freshman Class Impact Rankings. This ranking attempts to measure the contributions of freshmen to the team's overall success. Memphis, which has had two freshmen, Keven Fortin-Simard and Andy Shiels, in its top five lineup for its first two tournaments, has a relative strength ranking of 375.071 out of a possible 1000 and Fortin-Simard and Shiels are averaging a combined 71.33 stroke average per round. Stanford is in second place with a ranking of 366.147 for its two freshmen in its top five.
Duo Ranked in Golfstat Cup Top 250
A pair of Memphis golfers are also ranked in the top 250 standings for the Golfstat Cup. Keven Fortin-Simard is ranked #50, 2.691 strokes out of first place in adjusted average. Justin Miers is ranked #153, 3.857 strokes out of first. The Golfstat Cup is awarded every year to the individual with the lowest stroke average per round of golf. The rankings are adjusted to take into account par and conditions. Players must have played in at least 20 rounds by the end of the season and cannot have been disqualified or withdrawn from more than one stroke play tournament during the season. Past winners of the Golfstat Cup include Tiger Woods, Matt Kuchar, Charles Howell, and Hunter Mahan.
Memphis Climbs National Rankings
Fresh off its second straight tournament win, Memphis has shot upward in the national rankings. The Tigers rose from 26th to 16th in the latest Golfweek rankings and are 23rd in the Golfstat rankings. Those two rankings are based on numbers and statistics. In the two polls that are subjective, based on voting, Memphis is receiving votes in both GolfWorld and Precept Coaches' Top 25.
Two Straight for only the Second Time
For only the second time in the history of the men's golf program at Memphis, the Tigers have won consecutive tournaments. The only other time that has happened was back in the fall of 1990 when the Tigers won both the Hillman Robbins Memorial Intercollegiate in Memphis and the Dixie Intercollegiate in Columbus, Ga. The tournaments were respectively held on Oct. 9-10 and 19-21, 1990. Ironically, current head coach Grant Robbins was a redshirt freshman on the that season's team. Even more ironic, the individual medalist in both of those events was Memphis native Shaun Micheel, who competed collegiately for Indiana. The 1990-91 season was also the only other season in Memphis won more than one tournament in a season until this year.
Nice To See You Again
Memphis will see three teams in this tournament that they have already seen in previous tournaments. They are Iowa State, Miami (Ohio), and Missouri.
Tigers to be Featured on The Golf Channel
A television crew from The Golf Channel was on campus and around the city of Memphis on September 17 to film footage for its show College Central, which will feature the Tiger golf program in an upcoming episode on October 13. College Central is a half-hour show devoted to collegiate golf and each week, a program from around the country is featured. It airs on Wednesday nights at 9:30 p.m. Central time and is replayed at various times on Thursdays and Fridays.
The Tigers will have layoff of nearly of over two weeks before they close out their fall season at the Landfall Traditional in Wilmington, N.C. from October 29-31. That tournament will be hosted by UNC-Wilmington and will be held at the Country Club of Landfall's Jack Nicklaus course. There will be 12 teams in the field, including previous Memphis opponents Michigan, Purdue, and Xavier.