April 25, 2013
THE FLATS – Georgia Tech goes in pursuit of its fifth consecutive Atlantic Coast Conference golf title and seventh in eight seasons Friday when the Yellow Jackets tee off at 11:10 a.m. at the Old North State Club at Uwharrie Point in New London, N.C.
No team has won five straight conference championships in men’s golf since Wake Forest won 10 in a row from 1967-76. The Yellow Jackets have won four in a row twice, including titles from 1991-94.
Tech is grouped with Duke and NC State in Friday’s first round. The Yellow Jackets own the highest national ranking of any ACC team, but Duke (10) and Florida State (16) also are in the top 25 of the Golfstat rankings, and Clemson, North Carolina, NC State, Virginia Tech and Wake Forest are in the top 50.
The Yellow Jackets’ current national ranking of No. 7 in the Golfstat rankings is the highest it has held all year. Tech is No. 9 in the Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index and No. 9 in the Golf World magazine poll.
This spring, Tech’s highest finish has been second place at the Gary Koch Invitational, and the Jackets have posted two fourths (Amer Ari Invitational, Linger Longer Invitational), a fifth (Puerto Rico Classic) and a seventh (SHC Masters). Tech has also lost a pair of dual matches to No. 31 South Carolina and No. 12 TCU.
In the fall, Tech won twice, sharing the PING/Golfweek Preview invitational title with No. 1-ranked California and a one-stroke victory at the United States Collegiate Championshop, and finished second at the Brickyard Collegiate.
Sophomores Ollie Schniederjans (25th) and Anders Albertson (35th) remain Tech’s highest-ranked individuals nationally in the Golfweek/Sagarin Index and are the only Jackets to have competed in every event this year. Tech’s three other contestants this weekend are all ranked No. 136 or higher – junior Bo Andrews (95) and freshmen Shun Yat Hak (118), Michael Hines (136).
These Yellow Jackets Are Green
The five members of Tech’s travel team this week collectively are the most inexperienced of the last eight Yellow Jacket teams to play in the ACC Championship, having played a total of nine rounds at the Old North State Club. Freshmen Shun Yat Hak (who goes by Jason) and Michael Hines will see the course for the first time at Thursday’s practice round.
Last year’s ACC champions had a combined 12 rounds played at Old North State. Dating back to the 2006 championship team, here are the number of rounds played collectively by the five members of each team – 2006 (18), 2007 (24), 2008 (15), 2009 (21), 2010 (18), 2011 (21), 2012 (12, 9 of those by James White), 2013 (9).
Tech a head-to-head winning percentage of 76.2 against the nation’s sixth-most difficult schedule, according to the Golfweek/Sagarin Index. Tech is 34-20-5 against teams ranked in the top 25, 57-25-6 against teams ranked in the top 50.
Tech is 13-3 head-to-head, collectively, against the other teams in the ACC this year. The “losses” have come to Clemson and Wake Forest, both in the Carpet Capital Collegiate to open the fall when the Yellow Jackets finished tied for 11th, and Florida State, whom the jackets finished second to at the Gary Koch Invitational.
The Tech fivesome playing this week individually has one victory (Bo Andrews at the Gary Koch Invitational), four top-5 finishes, 11 top-10 finishes and 18 top-20 finishes.
In terms of stroke average, Tech’s five players competing this week rank in the ACC as follows – Schniederjans (5), Albertson (10), Andrews (14), Hak (17), Hines (27).
Tech’s 2012-13 team has an average team score of 288.2, 1-over-par.
The Yellow Jackets’ average drop (non-counting) score is 76.74, the eighth-lowest figure in the nation.
Tech scored a perfect 1000 on the NCAA’s Academic Progress Report for the ninth consecutive year, every year since the annual report was established in 2003-04.
Tech Continues to Dominate ACC Championship
Georgia Tech won its fourth consecutive Atlantic Coast Conference championship in 2012, sixth in the last seven years, leading wire-to-wire for a 7-shot victory over Virginia at the Old North State Club.
The Yellow Jackets has led each of the last four ACC Championships wire-to-wire and posted the day’s low score in nine of the 12 rounds. Four of Tech’s five players finished in the top 10 in 2012 – Anders Albertson T4, Bo Andrews, Richard Werenski and Ollie Schniederjans each T7. All-American James White tied for 16th and counted his score only once in three rounds.
Tech’s 14 ACC men’s golf titles in history ranks second among conference schools behind Wake Forest (18). Tech has won nine of its conference titles under current head coach Bruce Heppler, five of those outright (1999, 2001, 2002, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012) and two shared (2006, 2007).
The Yellow Jackets won five championships (1985, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994) under previous head coach Puggy Blackmon.
Eight of Tech’s ACC titles have occurred at the Old North State Club, the first occurring in 1999 by 10 strokes over North Carolina and Duke. Tech won the 2011 crown with a tournament record score of 831 (-33) and by a record 20 strokes. Tech shared the 2006 title with North Carolina, and the 2007 crown with Virginia Tech.
Georgia Tech’s individual ACC Champions include Bob McDonnell in 1985, David Duval in 1991 and 1993, Mikko Rantanen in 1994, Bryce Molder in 2000, Cameron Tringale in 2006, Chesson Hadley in 2010 and Paul Haley in 2011.