April 18, 2014
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech will face Auburn, and Georgia will take on Florida State in the semifinals of the Capital City Club College Match Play Championship Saturday at the Capital City Club’s Crabapple Course in Milton, Ga.
The unique, one-day event features the four teams playing each other at match play with semifinal matches beginning at 7:30 a.m., followed by the consolation and championship matches at 1:30 p.m. A trophy will be presented to the team champion following the championship match, and each match in the event will count toward the teams’ head-to-head records for NCAA championship qualification. Admission for the event is free.
The matches are structured similar to those at the NCAA Championship, with the major exception being that each team will field six players instead of the usual five. Each team’s No. 6 player will face each other, followed by their No. 5 players and so on. Scoring will also be the same, with each individual match counting one point toward the team score. A two-hole playoff involving all six players from each team will be utilized in the event of a 3-3 match tie.
Tech, which holds the highest national ranking (No. 5) of the four teams in this week’s Golfstat rankings, will face the Tigers, the lowest ranked team at No. 26. Georgia, a hair behind the Yellow Jackets at No. 6, draws the 19th-ranked Seminoles.
“We’re excited about this event for a couple of reasons,” said Tech coach Bruce Heppler. “We wanted to have a chance to compete between our tournament in Ohio and the ACC Championship, and we don’t get an opportunity to compete at match play very often. So the four teams will have a chance to play two matches that day, and the club would love for golf fans to come out and take in a full day of college golf.”
The four competing teams have combined to win 10 tournaments in 2013-14. The Yellow Jackets come in with some momentum, having won their last two events – the Valspar Invitational in Palm City, Fla., and the Robert Kepler Invitational in Columbus, Ohio, and have won four tournaments altogether this year. Georgia has won three times this year, including each of its last two outings as well. Auburn has win three times this spring, most recently the Hootie at Bulls Bay in late March, while Florida State won the USF Invitational in early March for its only victory this year.
In head-to-head competition in tournament stroke play this year, Georgia Tech is 2-1 against Auburn, 2-0 vs. Florida State and 3-1 vs. Georgia.
Ten players on the four teams are currently ranked among the nation’s top 100 individuals by Golfstat. Georgia boasts five players in that group, led by Joey Garber at No. 4, and while Tech’s Ollie Schniederjans, with four victories this year and a slightly better head-to-head record, is No. 7, and Seth Reeves, with two wins and three top-10 finishes, is No. 30. Auburn has two in the top 100, and Florida State has one.
The rest of Tech’s team will include Richard Werenski (ranked No. 112), Anders Albertson (135), Bo Andrews (147), who have combined for eight top-10 finishes, and freshman Vincent Whaley, who is the only other Yellow Jacket to compete in tournaments for Tech this year (three events).
“We’re thrilled to have four of the best teams in the country coming to the Capital City Club for this inaugural event,” said Bob Covington of the Capital City Club, who served as tournament chairman for the NCAA Championship last spring and is organizing this event. “We hope this will become an annual event.”
This is the final tune-up for the four teams before their conference championships take place next week. The Atlantic Coast Conference Championship, which Tech has won six times in the last eight years, is April 25-27 in New London, N.C. The Southeastern Conference is being held on the same dates in St. Simons Island, Ga.
The Capital City Club Crabapple Course hosted last year’s NCAA Division I Championship, won by Alabama, and has also hosted the 2010 NCAA East Regional and the 2012 PING/Golfweek Preview Invitational. The course plays to a par of 72 and is 7,319 yards long.
Golfstat Individual Rankings
Auburn – Niclas Carlsson (79), Matt Gilchrest (99), Jake Mondy (119), Ryan Benton (191), Daniel Stringfellow (213), Victor Wiggins (214)
Florida State – Jack Maguire (18), Hank Lebioda (129)
Georgia – Joey Garber (4), Lee McCoy (38), Michael Cromie (42), Keith Mitchell (52), Nicholas Reach (71), Greyson Sigg (128)
Georgia Tech – Ollie Schniederjans (7), Seth Reeves (30), Richard Werenski (112), Anders Albertson (135), Bo Andrews (147)
Georgia Tech Match Play History
While match play in college golf may be infrequent, Georgia Tech is no stranger to it, having participated in five regular season match play events since 2001, as well as three times in the five years the NCAA has utilized match play to determine its champion. Here is a history of Tech’s participation.
2013 NCAA Championship – d. UNLV 3-2 (quarterfinals), l. eventual champion Alabama 3-0-2 (semifinals)
2013 regular season – l. South Carolina 3-2-1, l. TCU 3-2-1
2011 NCAA Championship – l. eventual champion Augusta State 3-2
2010 NCAA Championship – l. eventual champion Augusta State 3-2
2008 Callaway Golf Collegiate Match Play – d. Texas 4-1, d. Georgia 3-2, d. South Carolina 3-2, l. UCLA 4-1
2006 Hooters Collegiate Match Play – d. Missouri 5-0, d. Arizona State 3-1-1, d. Stanford 3-1-1, l. Georgia 3-2
2005 Hooters Collegiate Match Play – d. Penn State 3-2, d. Arizona 4-1, d. Texas 3-0-2, l. Oklahoma State 4-0-1
2004 Hooters Collegiate Match Play – d. USC 3-2, d. Georgia 3-2, l. Florida 3-1-1, d. Oklahoma State
2000 CGF National Intercollegiate Match Play – d. Texas 2.5-2.5 (won playoff), d. Georgia 3-2, l. Arizona 3-2
About Georgia Tech Golf
Georgia Tech’s golf team is in its 19th year under head coach Bruce Heppler. The Yellow Jackets have won 14 Atlantic Coast Conference Championships, made 26 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.