Men’s golf to play against D-I schools

Men’s golf to play against D-I schools

Editor-in-Chief

After a 14th place finish in the nation last season, the men’s golf team is preparing to take on Division I teams at the famed Yale Golf Course for their second tournament of the fall semester. This marks the third time the Hilltoppers will compete in the Macdonald Cup against big names such as Notre Dame University and host university Yale Sept. 29-30 in New Haven, Conn.

It can be tough for a Division II school like St. Edward’s University not only to compete, but to just gain a spot in a Division I tournament. But cross-division play has a lot to do with friends and connections, and Head Coach Todd Ohlmeyer and the head coach of the Yale team Colin Sheehan played high school golf together in Connecticut.

However, the Hilltoppers have a strong record at the Yale tournament—the team finished fourth out of 14 in 2011 in front of teams like Columbia, Harvard and Pennsylvania State University. St. Edward’s placed third at the same tournament in 2009.

“It is going to be hard,” sophomore Jose Hernandez said of the upcoming tournament. “We expect to win, but it is going to be hard.”

Especially since the team is coming off a 12th place finish out of 16 teams at their first tournament this season. The team traveled to Indianapolis, Ind. Sept. 17-18 to compete in The Brickyard Invitational, a Division II tournament with a slew of top-ranked Division II names like No. 2 ranked Barry University and No. 1 ranked Nova Southeastern University.

“When you are playing against a field that strong and you are not on your best game, it is obviously disappointing, but it was the first tournament,” Ohlmeyer said.

The team was also short a key player; junior Enrique Livas was recovering from Lasik eye surgery during the tournament. Livas played in all but one event last season and will join the team for the Macdonald Cup this weekend.

The course at Yale, which is consistently ranked among the top golf courses in the world, is equally as tough as the competition the team will encounter. But the team is ready, as the course has the same type of grass that the team played on during The Brickyard Invitational.

“It is a really nice course. It is more fun,” Hernandez said of playing on a nicer course.

This year’s team consists of sophomores Paul Drinkwater, Corey Hayford, Hernandez, Kameron Kubis, Andre Rodas, juniors Livas, Brian Smith, and Drew Bell. Five players will travel to Connecticut for the tournament.

Despite a rough start, the team is optimistic about the rest of the season. 

“Our focus every year is the same: to get better every tournament and peak at the end of the year,” Ohlmeyer said.

The Hilltoppers will compete in the Ryan Palmer Invitational in Amarillo, Texas Oct. 8-9 and will travel to Seaside, Calif. for the Otter Invitational Oct. 22-23.