Monday, February 24, 2014

The North Greenville University Men’s Golf Team will begin the spring season this Monday and Tuesday at the Irish Creek Invitational hosted by Pfeiffer University at the Club at Irish Creek in Kannapolis, NC.  This marks the second consecutive year that the Crusaders have played in this event.  

This year’s field is comprised of 17 total teams and includes Conference Carolinas members Limestone College, Erskine College, Belmont Abbey College, Barton College, host Pfeiffer University, as well as other NCAA DII regional opponents in Queens University, Lenoir-Ryhne College, Catawba College, and NCAA DI teams of Appalachian State University and Eastern Carolina University.  The Davis Love III designed track  plays host to the Toshiba North Carolina Open and is a regular stop on the eGolf Professional Tour.  Play for the 36-hole event will begin Monday morning with a 10 am shotgun start for all teams, North Greenville will be paired with Catawba College and Capital University for Monday’s first round. 

            After finishing the fall portion of the season with a final Golfstat ranking of 43rd, which included 3 top 5 team finishes, the Crusaders begin the spring with goals of a Conference Carolinas Championship.  The Men’s team will look to lean heavy this spring on the experience of a foursome of upper classmen.  The Crusader’s will be led once again by Senior Josh O’Neal who will embark on his last semester as a collegiate golfer.  The 2013 NCCAA All-American and 2011 All- Conference performer will be joined in the starting line-up by Junior Sam Goodnight, who picked up his first collegiate win this past fall at the Rock Barn Invitational and Junior Tucker MacDonald, who tallied his second collegiate victory last fall at the Anderson University Inv. 

Also looking to provide a big boost will be Junior Joshua Hopwood who had two Top 20 finishes in the fall. “I know the guys are chomping at the bit to get out there and compete. We have had a great last few weeks of prep leading up to this weekend.” said Assistant Coach Brad Caldwell “ They’ve put in a lot of hard work on the course and in the gym to get ready for this spring, the guys will play some of the best courses in the southeast this spring and I’m extremely excited at the opportunity the men have to capture a Conference title this year.”

            The Men’s team will compete in four tournaments following the Irish Creek Invitational before taking on the rest of the conference at the Conference Carolinas Championships at Bryan Park Golf & Conference Center in Browns Summit, NC on April 11th-15th.

            One of the highlights of the spring for both the Men’s and Women’s Golf Program is the Crusader’s will play host at the 2014 Cliffs Intercollegiate at the Cliffs @ Mountain Park on March 31st-April 1st.  The Cliffs @ Mountain Park is a phenomenal track designed by World Golf Hall of Fame member Gary Player and recently opened for play in September 2013.  Golf Digest has preliminarily ranked the Mountain Park course as one of the Top 100 courses in America.  “ We are extremely blessed and excited about hosting our collegiate event at the prestigious Cliffs.” added Coach Caldwell “The Mountain Park course will be one of the best courses these players will ever play in their lifetime.  We have a great variety of teams coming this year from top 10 ranked NCAA DII teams to local DI teams. The Cliffs is a first class organization and we can wait for March 31st.

You can follow the Crusaders results this spring on Golfstat.com