Men's Golf Recap: May 8

Courtesy: MEAC Media Relations
          Release: 05/08/2016
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Courtesy: Courtesy of BCU Sports Information

Bethune-Cookman Captures 2016 PGA Minority Title

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. – In dramatic fashion, Bethune-Cookman Men’s Golf reestablished itself as champions on Sunday, winning the 30th PGA Minority Collegiate Golf Championship, contested at PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Florida. The action took place on the famed Wanamaker Course. For the Wildcats, it was their third in the last four years, after failing to win the title in 2015.

Bethune-Cookman (296-304-307=907) captured the team title in playoff fashion – the first time the Wildcats have won in a team playoff of a tournament in more than four seasons.

Bethune-Cookman and Tennessee State (295-308-304=907) stood deadlocked at 907 apiece after three days and 54 holes of golf. The Tigers led after Friday’s opening round, while the Wildcats battled back to regain the lead after Saturday’s second round play.

The playoff began on the par-five first hole of the Wanamaker Course – the place where the tournament began 72 hours earlier. Two groups and 25 minutes later, Bethune-Cookman emerged as Men’s Division I champions, having required only 20 shots to Tennessee State’s 21 on the 487-yard, par-5 opening hole.

Tennessee State’s bid was led by freshman Drew Owens, who was the Division I Men’s medalist at 221.

Bethune-Cookman leaned upon Connor O’Brien (75-73-76=224, +8) to lead the way for all Wildcats scorers. The Harpenden, England sophomore finished atop the team scoring for the Maroon and Gold for the first time in his collegiate career, firing a final round 4-over-par 76.

Freshman Joel Ramirez (71-74-81=226) finished second for the Cats, and just two strokes behind O’Brien on the individual tournament leaderboard. The Barcelona, Spain native turned in a final round 81 in his first PGA Minority Championship event.

Playing in his second and final PGA Minority Championship was senior Jackson Kneeshaw (74-80-77=231), shaving three strokes from Saturday’s play to finish with a 5-over 77 in Sunday’s action.

Classmate Leon Fricker (76-84-73=233) bounced back Sunday with a final round 1-oiver 73 to lead all Wildcats golfers. As one of the most decorated golfers in B-CU history, Fricker managed a 17-over scorecard in total in his final action for the Maroon and Gold.

The final B-CU golfer was fellow senior Bradley Peil (76-77-82=235), firing a final round 82 to conclude his Wildcats career.

For Bethune-Cookman, the event was the final of its kind on the 2015-16 spin. For seniors Liam Chambers, Leon Fricker, Jackson Kneeshaw and Bradley Peil, they end their careers as title winners at the PGA Minority Championships. For Fricker, the title is the third of its kind in his four-year storied letterwinning career.

The PGA Minority Collegiate Golf Championship has elevated golf in minority colleges and universities by providing opportunities for players to compete in a national championship. In 2006, the PGA of America was granted complete ownership and management by the National Minority Collegiate Golf Scholarship Fund.

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NCCU Rallies for Best Division I Finish at PGA Minority Collegiate Championship

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. – The North Carolina Central University men’s golf team posted its best score of the weekend in Sunday’s final round at the PGA Golf Club in Port St Lucie, Florida, rallying for the program’s best finish at the PGA Minority Collegiate Championship on the Division I level.

The Eagles trimmed 25 shots off Friday’s opening round team score to shoot a 306 on Sunday, moving past Maryland Eastern Shore into fourth place at the 30th annual event. Since reclassifying to NCAA Division I, NCCU’s previous best finish at the PGA Minority Collegiate Championship was a tie for fifth place in 2009.

NCCU’s best finish all-time at the PGA event is a third-place effort in the Division II standings in 2006.

Sophomore Jordan Bohannon posted an even-par final round of 72 for a total score of 227 (80-75-72), placing fifth in the Division I individual leaderboard. Fellow sophomore Zane Lewis closed the tournament with a 75 (+3) to finish in ninth place with a score of 230 (76-79-75).

Senior Michael Wilson, who battled a painful injury all weekend, played a gutsy final round of his college career with a 79 – a 15-stroke improvement from his score on Friday when even competing was in jeopardy.

Junior Sumner Tate was a steady contributor for the Eagles with rounds of 83, 80 and 80, while senior Jerome Bostwick closed out his college career with a 266 (92-80-94).

As a team, NCCU recorded scores of 331, 314 and 306 for a total score of 951, eight shots ahead of Florida A&M and 11 strokes behind third-place Savannah State.

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Maryland Eastern Shore Places Sixth At Minority Championship

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. – In their best season as a NCAA Division I affiliate, Coach Marshall Cropper and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) Men’s Golf Team concluded its 2015-16 campaign with a sixth-place finish at the PGA Minority Golf Championship.

The three-day, 54-hole event was held on the Wanamaker Golf Course (72-par, 6,840 yards) in Port St. Lucie, Fla.

Maryland Eastern Shore’s sixth-place result was the highest finish for the Hawks in this tourney, dating back to 2011.

After two rounds, the Hawks held the fourth spot with only 18 holes remaining. On the final day, Maryland Eastern Shore was unable to maintain momentum as they slipped to sixth in the standings.

UMES shot a collective 969 (+105), which is the eighth-best team average in a 54-hole event in the program’s history.

Freshman Blair Waters led the way, scoring 232 (+16) in a three-day span.

Sophomore Demarkis Cooper reached another milestone as he moved into sixth in the program’s all-time most rounds played, passing Gregory Raad. As of today, the Maryland product has competed in 37 rounds.

Furthermore, Cooper tied Raad on the most events played board with 15 tournament appearances.

Fellow classmate Christian Owens also earned a spot on the all-time most rounds list, moving into 10th place after surpassing Bryce Young.

Additionally, Owens broke a tie with Young on the all-time events played leaderboard. Currently, Owens sits 10th overall after taking part in 12 tournaments.

Cooper, Owens, and Timothy Mitchell each played all nine events this season, which ties the all-time single season mark. Also, all three Hawks took part in 21 rounds and fell one shy of the single-season record (22), held by Michael Veverka during the 2011-12 season.

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