February 7, 2012

Men's Golf Takes 14th Place at Outback Steakhouse Intercollegiate

Contact: Steve Cunha, sjcunh2033@northgeorgia.edu

The North Georgia men's golf team opened up the spring competitive season shooting a two round aggregate total of 638 (315-323) to finish in 14th place at the Outback Steakhouse Intercollegiate hosted by Catawba and contested at the par-72 Hombre Golf Club.

The 16-team field was heavily dominated by Peach belt Conference schools, as both Columbus State and Flagler finished in the top 5.

North Georgia was tied for sixth with PBC foe Montevallo in the opening round after shooting 315, but faltered in the second and final round, dropping eight strokes and eight spots to finish in 14th, two shots ahead of host Catawba and one stroke behind Limestone and Central Alabama Community College who tied for 12th.

Carson-Newman took down Flagler and Lincoln Memorial in a three-team playoff to earn the victory with Columbus State and King College rounding out the top five.

Lincoln Memorial's Eric Kennedy earned individual honors as he defeated King College's Adrian Kibsey in a playoff. Justin Grice of Columbus State finished in third, while Liam Ashby of Carson-Newman, Matt Hardman of Catawba and Greg Mergel of Flagler finished in a three-way tie for fourth.

The two-round low scorer for the Saints was sophomore Grant Rish who followed up an opening round two-over par 74 with a final round 80 giving him a score of 154, which was good enough for a share of 23rd place. Rish was fourth in the tournament in par 4 scoring at four-over-par and registered a team-high 24 pars.

Following Rish was freshman Aaron George who was one of two Saints to improve on their opening round score. He shaved one stroke off his opening round 80 in the second round to finish with a tournament total of 159 leaving him in a tie for 43rd place.

Will Brackett was right on George's heals, finishing with a two-round of 160 (78-82) leaving him a tie for 47th place.

Matt Rochlin and Hunter Beach rounded out the field in a tie 67th place for the Saints. Rochlin was the other Saint to improve on his opening round score as he knocked two strokes off his opening round 84 in the second round to finish the tournament with a total of 166. Beach was consistent in his debut for the Saints, shooting an 83 in both rounds at the Hombre.

The Outback Steakhouse Intercollegiate was contested at the 6,541 yard, par-72 Hombre Golf Club in Panama City Beach, Florida. The course rating is 76.1 and it has a slope rating of 145.

The Saints return to the links on February 13, when they travel to Sea Island, Georgia, to take part in the 36-hole Coastal Georgia Winter Invitational.