Oct. 20, 2017
Men's Golf at Camden Collegiate Invitational
COLUMBIA, S.C. -- South Carolina host its lone event of the 2017-18 season this weekend – the 2017 Camden Collegiate Invitational. Teams will play 36 holes on Saturday with a shotgun start at 8 a.m.
The final round will take place on Sunday with tee times beginning at 8 a.m. 17 teams are set to compete in the fourth year of the event, which the Gamecocks have won twice (2014 & 2015).
All-SEC and PING All-Southeast Region picks Keenan Huskey and Scott Stevens remain staples in the lineup, as well as junior Will Miles and sophomore Caleb Proveaux. Carolina will be sporting the same lineup as The Jackrabbit with the addition of sophomore Jamie Wilson in the five-hole spot. All five players shot par or better at The Jackrabbit helping the Gamecocks shoot under par as a team in every round of the event.
Redshirt senior Ben Dietirch and freshman Andrew Spiegler will be competing as individuals.
FROM THE COACH
“We love this golf tournament. It’s a classic Donald Ross golf course. It’s in wonderful shape. The tournament has grown. We’ve got 17 teams this year, which is fantastic. It looks like we’re going to have some great weather. Quick turnaround for us getting back from Indiana late Tuesday, but I think the guys are ready. We’re looking forward to a great weekend.” -- head coach Bill McDonald
HISTORY AT THE CAMDEN COLLEGIATE INVITATIONAL
The Camden Collegiate Invitational started in 2014 and Carolina took home the team title the first two years of the event. The then 10th ranked Gamecocks came back to defeat Wofford by a stroke in 2014 after shooting a final round 275 (-5). Caleb Sturgeon, Will Starke and Matt NeSmith all had top-10 finishes for Carolina. In 2015, the Gamecocks dominated shooting an 18-hole program record 265 (-15) in the second round en route to a 25-shot win (838, -2) over Charleston Southern (863, +23). Keenan Huskey took home individual medalist honors at 5-under, Will Miles finished second at 2-under and Scott Stevens finished T-10th at 5-over.
Carolina finished runner-up last season to James Madison. The Dukes won after posting an even par 280 in the final round en route to a nine shot win over the Gamecocks. They shot 850 (+10) for the tournament. Huskey was runner-up medalist after falling to JMU’s Ryan Cole in a sudden-death playoff. Huskey shot a sizzling 6-under 64 in the second round, tying for the fourth-lowest 18-hole score in program history. Stevens and Miles both T-6th at 5-over par.
This year’s Camden Collegiate Invitational field features 17 teams. The tournament, which was created to highlight instate golf programs from across South Carolina, will feature eight schools from the Palmetto State this year: South Carolina, Charleston Southern, Francis Marion, Furman, Presbyterian, USC-Aiken, USC Upstate and Wofford.
RECAPPING THE 2016-17 SEASON
Carolina advanced to its 10th NCAA Regional in the last 11 seasons a year ago, qualified for the first ever SEC Match Play at the SEC Championship (top-eight teams in stroke play), finished in the top-five in eight of its 12 events and won the Hootie At Bulls Bay Intercollegiate for the third consecutive season.
Keenan Huskey earned Honorable Mention All-America honors from Golfweek after a standout junior season. He logged the third lowest scoring average all-time in program history at 70.63 en route to earning Second Team All-SEC honors and PING All-Southeast Region honors. He played in all 12 events and finished in the top-20 nine times, with a team-high six top-10s. Despite battling an arm injury for much of the second half of the season, he still managed to finish T-9th in the stroke play portion of the SEC Championship.
Scott Stevens had a stellar sophomore campaign, logging the fifth lowest scoring average all-time at Carolina (71.26) and the lowest ever by a second-year player in program history. He had seven top-20 finishes and three top-fives en route to earning Second Team All-SEC recognition and PING All-Southeast Region honors. Huskey and Stevens were the only players on the roster to start all 12 events last season.
Jamie Wilson had a breakout spring for the Gamecocks in 2017. He saw action in the starting lineup eight times and posted a 72.97 scoring average, the sixth best in program history for a freshman. Wilson helped propel the Gamecocks to the first ever SEC Match Play last spring after shooting a career-best 66 (-4) in the final round of stroke play to finish T-16th at the SEC Championship. He earned SEC Freshman of the Week honors twice
Gamecock head coach Bill McDonald is the winningest coach by tournament victories in school history with 20. McDonald broke the previous record of nine held by Puggy Blackmon (1995-2007) with Carolina’s win at the Carpet Capital Collegiate in September 2014. McDonald captured a school-record five wins in 2014-15 and snagged his latest victory at the 2017 Hootie at Bulls Bay Intercollegiate on March 28. It was the team’s first win of the 2016-17 season and its third straight year bringing home the team title at Bulls Bay Golf Club
South Carolina will travel 4,623 miles west to wrap-up its fall season at the Ka'anapali Collegiate in Lahaina, Hawaii for the second consecutive season. The three-day event, hosted by the University of Hawaii, runs from Nov. 3-5 and will be played at the Royal Ka’anapali Course.
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