IRVING, Texas – Thirteen men’s golf teams, five ranked among the Top 100 nationally, are set to tee off Sunday morning as the 2016 Conference USA Men’s Golf Championship gets underway at the Texarkana Country Club in Texarkana, Arkansas. The championship consists of 54 holes of stroke play on the par 72, 6,969-yard course over three days, April 24-26.
“It’s a fun time of the year again when we head back to Texarkana for the Conference USA Championship,” stated Head Coach Ryan Cabbage. “With three guys returning in Seth, Victor, and Thomas who played the course last year, we will have some familiarity with the course. I love the format with 54 holes of stroke play leading into the match play championship.”
Following the results of stroke play, the top four teams will advance to a seeded match play round to be held on Wednesday, April 27. The team champion after match play will receive C-USA’s automatic berth to the NCAA Regionals. Conference USA became the first league to include match play, which reflects the NCAA format, when it introduced this structure for its tournament last season. This is the seventh time that Texarkana has played host to the C-USA Men’s Golf Championship.
Seeding is based on the current Golfstat rankings, making No. 37 UAB this year’s top seed. The Blazers will tee off hole No. 1, along with defending champion and No. 60 North Texas and No. 76 Charlotte, at 9:20 a.m.
Seth Gandy, Victor Wiggins, Thomas Rowland, Nicolas Manifacier and Tyler Young will make up Charlotte’s five-man team to compete in Arkansas.
Gandy has played in 24 rounds this season leading the team with a 73.29 stroke average. In those eight events, Gandy has posted eight rounds under par and a pair of top-10 finishes. His low round of 68 (-3) and tournament total of 211 (-2) came two weeks ago at the Cabarrus County Irish Creek Intercollegiate.
Wiggins is right behind Gandy with his 73.70 stroke average in a team-best 30 events this season. He too has averaged at-least one par under round per tournament giving him 10 in 2015-16. Wiggins’ season-best round of 67 (-1) and tournament of 211 (+1) both came back in the fall of 2015.
Rowland and Manifacier both have played in 27 rounds this season covering nine tournaments. Rowland is third on the team with his 74.89. Rowland defended his Davidson Invitational crown back in February winning the event for the second-straight season. His tournament low this season of 216 (E) came in that Davidson event while his low round of 68 (-4) came in the final round of the Linger Longer Invitational last month. Manifacier has a pair of top-10 finishes this season with a 76.48 stroke average. His low round of 69 (-3) came in the Bank of Tennessee Intercollegiate.
Young has stepped up and played 21 rounds this season posting four rounds under with a 76.86 stroke average. All four of his rounds at par or better have come during the spring season with two coming in the Linger Longer tournament a few weeks ago.
“We need a good week and need to play well,” finished Cabbage. “It’s really pretty simple. I think these guys will respond and I expect that we’re going to have a great week. They’ll be ready.”
Live scoring for all three stroke play rounds and match play will be available through http://www.charlotte49ers.com.