PROVO, Utah – The BYU men’s golf squad is excited to embark on a new season, after a busy summer, which saw many student-athletes competing in tournaments throughout the country.
Led by senior Zac Blair, the Cougars look to improve upon last year’s third place finish in the West Coast Conference. Blair enters the season on Golf World’s Top 50 Male Players to Watch List and claims the top scoring average (70.25) of any returning Division 1 golfer from the 2011-12 season.
“Zac gives it everything he’s got, every time he’s out their playing,” head coach Bruce Brockbank said. “He’s really developed as a leader. He leads this team. He’s finding a way to rally the kids and when you have a kid like that it makes it really fun.”
With Blair and Devon Purser competing at the 2012 U.S. Amateur Championship and Justin Keiley competing at the 2012 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship, experience should pay dividends during the upcoming season. Purser advanced to the Round of 16 in the U.S. Amateur after defeating Purdue golfer Adam Schenk in a three-hole playoff.
Team depth and consistency will be essential to the Cougars success during the upcoming season. Establishing a strong supporting staff around Blair and creating a balanced team effort will allow the Cougars to get off to a quick start.
“There’s two things that we need this year – we need our top guys to shoot some low scores and then we need that fourth, fifth and sixth spots to shoot some decent scores for us,” Brockbank said. “If we’ll do that then we can have some success.”
The Cougars will also look for strong play this season from returning senior Adam Tebbs, junior Jordan Hammer and sophomores Stephen Archibald and Mike Jurca. Jurca won the Logan River Amateur and Wingpointe Amateur Championships during the offseason.
With a strong core of returning players, the Cougars have their sights set high, looking to reach postseason play in the NCAA Regionals for the first time since the 2009-10 season.
The Cougars tee off the 2012-13 season next Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 17-18, at the Kikkor Golf Husky Invitational in Bremerton, Wash. The tournament, which is hosted by the University of Washington, will feature teams from across the West Coast, including WCC foes St. Mary’s, Gonzaga and Pepperdine.
Returning to action on Sept. 28 and 29, the Cougars will close out the opening month of fall tournament play as they compete in the William H. Tucker Intercollegiate in Albuquerque, N.M.
Chris Scheitinger is a student at Brigham Young University studying Public Relations. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org