Sept. 18, 2014
Kingston Springs, Tenn. – Facing another strong field with seven of the top 20 teams in the nation, All-Americans Ollie Schniederjans and Anders Albertson lead Georgia Tech’s golf team into its second fall event beginning Friday at the DICK’S Sporting Goods Collegiate Challenge Cup outside of Nashville, Tenn.
One of the only events of its kind in the country, this unique, multi-day collegiate competition, hosted by the Nashville Sports Council, brings twelve teams from the ACC and SEC to The Golf Club of Tennessee for a 54-hole team and individual stroke play event, followed by an 18-hole match play conference finale, pitting the teams in each conference against each other to play for Top Conference honors.
This year’s tournament will feature five of the top ten and seven of the top twenty preseason men’s teams in the country, as ranked by Golfweek. Representing the Atlantic Coast Conference will be Clemson (#17), Duke, Georgia Tech (#3), Louisville, NC State, and Virginia (#11). Georgia (#9), Missouri, Ole Miss, South Carolina (#7), Texas A&M (#8), and Vanderbilt (#6) will represent the Southeastern Conference in this year’s event.
“It’s a lot of golf they get to play,” said Tech coach Bruce Heppler. “Any time you have a chance to play matches is a good thing with the NCAA format being what it is. The Golf Club of Tennessee is a fantastic course; we played an NCAA regional there a few years ago. Georgia’s there, and they won their first event, Virginia has one of the best teams they’ve ever had, so it should be very competitive.”
Schniederjans (Powder Springs, Ga.), the world’s top amateur player and champion of the Carpet Capital Collegiate two weeks ago, and Albertson (Woodstock, Ga.), a three-time All-ACC performer who finished 18th at the Carpet Capital, lead a Tech travel team that includes senior Drew Czuchry (Auburn, Ga.), sophomore Vincent Whaley (McKinney, Texas) and freshman James Clark (Columbus, Ga.).
Schniederjans has won six collegiate events in his career and is in pursuit of the Tech record of eight shared by David Duval and Bryce Molder. He held off the challenge of the world No. 2 amateur Robby Shelton of Alabama and captured the Carpet Capital Collegiate by two shots. Albertson, the 2013 ACC Champion, closed the Carpet Capital with rounds of 67-70.
Whaley finished 23rd in Dalton competing as an individual and won the team’s qualifying tournament this week by six shots. Czuchry has qualified for his second straight event after playing in just four tournaments his first three years at Tech. Clark is making his Tech debut.
“Vince had it going at The Farm and was closed to the lead at one point. He’s worked really hard and has a chance to be a significant contributor this year. James has had one round over par (in qualifying) since he’s been here, very consistent. We had a really good qualifier this week, a great battle on the back nine [in the final round Tuesday]. It was encouraging to see a lot of guys under par and see what pressure does. So it was a really good qualifier from that standpoint. Drew has worked really hard and has some confidence now.”
Play will begin at 8 a.m. on Friday, September 19, with teams teeing off on holes #1 and #10. The second round will begin at 1:00 p.m. on Friday with a similar double tee start. Team pairings for Friday and a link to live scoring via Golfstat are posted on the event website, DSGCollegiateChallenge.com. Stroke play will continue on Saturday at 9 a.m. with teams starting in order of Friday’s 36-hole scoring.
The Conference Challenge will take place on Sunday, with teams from the ACC playing 18-hole matches against their similarly ranked opponent from the SEC. The conference that accumulates the most points on Sunday will be crowned the 2014 Collegiate Challenge Cup Champion.
Last year’s inaugural event saw Ben Crancer from Texas A&M walk away as the individual stroke play champion with Georgia taking home the team stroke play crown. The SEC completed the weekend sweep by defeating the ACC in the Conference Challenge.
PRO JACKETS UPDATE
Matt Kuchar finished 13th and Cameron Tringale 15th at the Tour Championship by Coca-Cola last weekend at East Lake Golf Club. Because they reached the finals of the FedEx Cup Playoffs (Kuchar 8th, Tringale 20th), both will receive invitations or exemptions into all four of golf’s majors in 2015. Kuchar also remains exempt based on his world ranking.
Roberto Castro, Troy Matteson and Matt Weibring take one last stab at claiming 2014-15 PGA Tour cards this weekend with the Web.com Tour Championship at Dye’s Valley Course at TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra, Fla. The top 50 in earning from the four-tournament Web.com Tour Finals will earn PGA Tour status. Castro currently ranks 41st on that list, while Matt Weibring remains just outside the top 50 at No. 53.
Bo Andrews was one of 26 players to advance out of the first stage of European Tour qualifying school, Sept. 12-14, in Ebreichsdorf, Austria. He moves on to the second stage at one of four sites in Spain the weekend of Nov. 7-10. The final stage of qualifying is Nov. 15-20 in Girona, Spain.
ABOUT GEORGIA TECH GOLF
Georgia Tech’s golf team is in its 20th year under head coach Bruce Heppler. The Yellow Jackets have won 15 Atlantic Coast Conference Championships, made 27 appearances in the NCAA Championship and been the national runner-up four times. Connect with Georgia Tech Golf on social media by liking their Facebook page, or following on Twitter (@GT_Golf). For more information on Tech golf, visit Ramblinwreck.com.