April 19, 2013

GSW Golfers Prepare For PBC Championships

PINE MOUNTAIN - The Peach Belt men's golf championships will begin this Saturday, April 20 from Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Ga. The men will be on the Mountain View course with 36 holes of play on Saturday followed by 18 on Sunday. Columbus State is serving as host of the tournament, which is free to the public.

This is the second straight year and third overall that Callaway Gardens has hosted the PBC Championships, but the first time in conference history that the event will be played on a weekend.

UNC Pembroke is the defending champion after winning a playoff with USC Aiken for the 2012 crown. USC Aiken enters the 2013 tournament as the highest-ranked team in the Peach Belt at No. 3 in the most recent Golf World/Nike Golf Top 25. The Pacers are also the top-ranked team in the latest NCAA Southeast Regional poll.

Four PBC teams currently feature stroke averages below 297 with Georgia Southwestern and Armstrong joining CSU and GC. GSW is ranked No. 22 in the nation. The Hurricanes, led by first-year head coach Darcy Donaldson, are ranked seventh in the southeast in NCAA Division II.

This spring GSW has shaved five strokes per round off of their average team score from the fall season. As a result, the Hurricanes have played well down the stretch, finishing in the Top 5 of their last two tournaments.

Practice rounds for the PBC Championships will be held on Friday followed by a banquet to award the All-Conference teams.  Play begins Saturday morning at 8:00 am.  Fans can follow the action from Callaway Gardens with live stats for both events through Golfstat.

Men's Live Scoring: http://www.golfstatresults.com/public/index.cfm?tournament_id=4215

Below is a player-by-player breakdown of the Hurricane golfers participating in this year's PBC Championships:

Nate Gahman

Senior

   Leads the team with a 73.63 scoring average over 24 rounds this spring. Has finished in the Top 10 of three tournaments. Fired a low round of 69 at Spring Kickoff Intercollegiate in Fleming Island, Fla. on Feb. 11. Nate was the Hurricanes low scorer in three of the squad's nine tournaments in 2012-13. Gahman has the fifth-lowest scoring average in the PBC.
       

J.P. Griffin

Senior

  Ranks second on the team with a 74.29 scoring average over 24 rounds this spring. Has finished in the Top 10 of two tournaments and in the Top 5 on two occasions. Fired a low round of 69 at Kiawah Island Invitational in Sept. and at the Bearcat Invitational on March 25. J.P. was the Hurricanes low scorer in three of the squad's nine tournaments in 2012-13. He was named PBC Golfer of the Week on March 28, marking the third time in his career he as received the honor, and was an All-Region and PING All-America selection in 2011-12. Griffin has the 13th-lowest scoring average in the conference.
       

Matthew Whittaker

Junior

  Ranks third on the team with a 75.05 scoring average over 21 rounds this spring. Has finished in the Top 10 of once and in the Top 5 one time. Fired a low round of 68 at the Buccaneer Invitational in Miami Beach, Fla. on April 2. Matthew was the Hurricanes low scorer at the TVA Credit Union Invitational on Oct. 15-16.
       

Andrew Ritchot

Sophomore

  Ranks fourth on the team with a 75.75 scoring average over 24 rounds this spring. Has finished in the Top 10 once and in the Top 5 one time. Fired a low round of 67 at the Buccaneer Invitational in Miami Beach, Fla. on April 2. Andrew was the Hurricanes low scorer in the squad's last tournament, the Buccaneer Invite. He was named PBC Golfer of the Week on April 4.
       

Anders Olsson

Freshman

  Ranks fifth on the team with a 77.14 scoring average over 22 rounds this spring. Has finished in the Top 10 once and in the Top 5 one time. Fired a team-low round of 66 this season at the Spring Kickoff Intercollegiate in Fleming Island, Fla. on Feb. 11. Anders was the Hurricanes low scorer at the Spring Kickoff. Anders 5-under 66 round is tied for 4th in the PBC for best score of 2012-13.

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