Upstate Men’s Golf Releases 2012 Fall Schedule
Spartanburg, S.C. – Armed with a strong core of returning players and bolstered by two newcomers, the USC Upstate men's golf team will open the 2012-13 season at the Ocean Course on Kiawah Island, S.C., in early September as head coach Todd Lawton has announced the 2012 fall schedule.
Upstate returns to the Ocean Course for the second straight year to take part in the Invitational at the Ocean Course Sept. 9-11. It will be the first tournament of the year for the Spartans. The tournament is hosted by College of Charleston at the site of the 2012 PGA Championship which starts next week. Last year, Upstate participated in the 12-team tournament that featured the likes of Florida, Notre Dame, Maryland, Kansas, UAB and South Florida.
Upstate will return to the Rutgers Invitational (Sept. 14-15) for the fifth time in six years playing on the Division I level. The Spartans have won the team tournament title twice, including last year's victory at the Rutgers University Golf Course. Adam Goins (Gaffney, S.C.) claimed the individual title last season in a playoff with teammate Tyler Comer.
Upstate will play its third tournament of the fall on Oct. 28-30 when it travels back to Kiawah Island to take part in the Wendy's Kiawah Classic hosted by Charleston Southern. The tournament will be played on the Turtle Point Course and typically features a large field.
Upstate will close out the fall season in typical fashion at the CFSC/Stetson invitational on Nov. 5-6 in DeLand, Fla. The Spartans have played in the tournament hosted by Stetson every year since moving to Division I in 2007. The tournament is played at Victoria Hills Country Club. Upstate has claimed two third-place finishes and four top-five efforts in five appearances in the event.
"I'm excited that we have an opportunity to play the Ocean Course again this year only a few weeks after the PGA Championship," said Lawton. "Beginning the season on a world-renowned facility will present its challenges and help us prepare for other events. We have played and been successful at the Rutgers, Wendy's and Stetson's events in the past, and they are great venues and fields as well."
Upstate returns five of its top six leaders in stroke average from last year's team, including Goins, who led the team with 73.9 stroke average. He won the Rutgers Invitational, posted two top-10 finishes and led the Spartans with a .776 winning percentage on the year.
Joining Goins as the core of the returners are seniors Matthew Hopper (Gaffney, S.C.), Brian Horton Horton (Boiling Springs, S.C.) and Brad Sill (Spartanburg, S.C.). Hopper ranked tied for third in stroke average at 75.9 and claimed two top-10 finishes. Horton was second on the team with a 75.3 stroke average and claimed one top-10 finish. Oref played in three events for the Spartans, while Sill was tied for third on the team with a 75.9 stroke average and claimed a top-10 finish.
Also returning to the team are McKenzie Oref (Sr., Easley, S.C.), Daniel Revell (Jr., Roswell, Ga.) and Danny Brock (Jr., Simpsonville, S.C.). Oref played in three events for the Spartans in 2011-12. Revell competed in two events and finished a career-best second at the Caribbean Classic in his first collegiate start. He finished the year with a 74.3 stroke average, though did not play in enough rounds to qualify in stroke average rankings for the team. Brock saw action in one tournament last year.
Joining the returning players on the team is a pair of freshmen, Ryan Cornfield and Johan Sebastian Lopez. Cornfield had a strong junior career playing out of Dudley, England, while Lopez also had a solid junior career playing out of Bogota, Colombia.