Men's golf team returns to action at C&F Bank Intercollegiate
UNCG at the C&F Bank Intercollegiate (hosted by William & Mary), March 21-22, Kingsmill Resort, Williamsburg, Va.
By Rob Daniels
Coming off last week's fifth-place showing at the Pinehurst Intercollegiate, UNCG's men's golf team returns to action this week at the C&F Bank Intercollegiate. The event is hosted by William & Mary at Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, Va.
NUMERICALLY FAVORED: Entering the C&F Bank Intercollegiate, UNCG stands 79th nationally in the Golfweek/Sagarin rankings. That's four spots ahead of its nearest competitor in the 20-team field, Niagara. The Spartans, who have already faced 14 top-50 opponents in two spring events, aren't always presumed to be front-runners, but the notion of national prominence isn't entirely foreign to the program, either. UNCG has placed in the top 20 in short-game statistics six times in coach Terrance Stewart's tenure. Those rankings represent an amalgamation of several elements of play in and around the green, including sand-save success rate, putts per round and others.
MAJOR VENUES: For the third time in 2010-11, the Spartans will play at a complex that has hosted PGA Tour or major championships in the past decade. UNCG's own Bridgestone event, a fall tournament, is set at Forest Oaks Country Club, the home of Greensboro's PGA Tour event from 1977-2007. Last week, the Spartans played Pinehurst No. 6, part of the golf metropolis that counts Pinehurst No. 2 as its most celebrated facility. That course hosted the U.S. Open in 1999 and 2005 and will do so again in 2014. Now they take on the Woods Course at Kingsmill, the development best known for the River Course, which served as home for a PGA Tour event from 1981-2002.
AND STILL THE ONE: Sophomore Robert Hoadley developed into an All-Southern Conference player as a freshman last year and has remained the Spartans' MVP. Hoadley has led UNCG in six of its eight tournaments in 2010-11 and has finished among the top 20 individuals in five of those events. As the team enters the C&F Bank Intercollegiate, Hoadley is coming off his best performance of the spring, a final-round 67 in the Pinehurst Intercollegiate. That score tied his career low and helped move the Spartans up two spots in the team standings from seventh to their final placement of fifth.
SONDAY DRIVING: Competing as an unattached individual, UNCG's Kyle Sonday tied for eighth at Pinehurst last week. While the performance didn't count toward the Spartans' team score, it suggested the team might be getting deeper. Competition isn't just between teams; it can occur within them, too, and the benefit is apparent: It tends to elevate everybody's play.
CONSISTENCY: UNCG has been among the top five SoCon teams in the final Sagarin ratings in each of the past five years. Only Chattanooga has equaled that feat.
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