Sept. 19, 2002
ATLANTA — The Georgia Tech golf team will get its 2002-03 season under was on Saturday, when it faces Brigham Young in a dual match at the Golf Club of Georgia in Alpharetta, Ga., beginning at 8 a.m.
The match, which will feature seven 18-hole matches each worth one point, will serve as a precursor to the football game between the Yellow Jackets and Cougars that will kick off at 3:30 p.m., on Saturday. The event will be the first dual match that Tech has competed in since 1995, when the Jackets defeated a Tiger Woods-led Stanford team by a 3.5-1.5 score at Druid Hills Golf Club.
“This is a unique opportunity for us, in that our schedule allowed us one free playing date and there are not any one-day tournaments out there,” said Tech head coach Bruce Heppler. “I have a good friendship with Bruce Brockbank, BYU’s head coach, and I think it will be a neat opportunity for them to come here and play golf, along with seeing their football team play here in Atlanta as well. For us, it is a great opportunity to compete in match play, which we don’t get to do very often, and that will help us get ready for the match play championships later this fall. Also, Mike Barbosa, Wren Fowler and Thomas Jordan will be putting on a Georgia Tech uniform for the first time, which will be good before our first tournament of the year. We’re really just looking forward to a great day of competition.”
For the Jackets, Saturday’s match will be the first outside competition of the year, while the Cougars have already competed in two tournaments to open the fall season. Tech finished the 2002 season ranked number one in the Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index, while BYU was ranked 54th at the end of the year.
The Yellow Jackets turned in the most successful season in school history a year ago, winning a school-record seven team titles, having five players earn All-America honors, placing three players on the All-ACC team and winning the eighth ACC title in program history.
Tech returns three starters from a year ago, headed up by NCAA individual champion and first-team All-American senior Troy Matteson. Matteson led the team ago with a 71.41 stroke average, and recorded four individual titles on the year. Joining him at the top of the lineup will be sophomores Nicholas Thompson and Chan Wongluekiet, both of who earned honorable mention All-America honors a year ago, with Wongluekiet being named the ACC Rookie of the Year.
The remainder of Tech’s lineup on Saturday will consist of three veterans of the program and the team’s lone rookie. Senior Adam Cranford will be the only member of the group with collegiate playing experience, having competed in three tournaments in his career, including a pair of events last season. Sophomore Wren Fowler and redshirt freshman Mike Barbosa will be making their first appearance for the Yellow Jackets, while freshman Thomas Jordan joins the team after a solid prep career at Glynn Academy in Brunswick, Ga.
Admission to the dual match is free, with full results being available at www.ramblinwreck.com, following the conclusion of play on Saturday.