Oct. 25, 2013
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The University of Iowa men’s golf team travels to Dallas, Texas, to compete in the sixth annual Royal Oaks Intercollegiate, co-hosted by Baylor University and SMU. The tournament will be held at the Royal Oaks Country Club.
The 12-team field includes eight teams ranked in the top 50 of the Golfstat.com rankings. Oklahoma State, currently ranked third in the Golfstat.com rankings, returns to the Royal Oaks Country Club after winning the 2012 title. Host schools Baylor (22) and SMU (38), GRU-Augusta (44), Iowa, New Mexico (18), Ohio State, Oklahoma (12), Sam Houston State, Stanford (11), Texas A&M (7), and UT-Arlington make up the rest of the field.
PREVIOUS APPEARANCES AT THE ROYAL OAKS INTERCOLLEGIATE
Ian Vandersee won the 2012 Royal Oaks Intercollegiate, carding a three-round score of 206 (-7), propelling the Hawkeyes to a fifth-place finish. Joseph Winslow tied for 16th last season, carding a 212 (-1). In 2011, Iowa tied for ninth place. Vandersee tied for 43rd after shooting a 218 (+5), and Steven Ihm tied for 50th with a score of 223 (+13). The Hawkeyes won the tournament in 2010, fueled by Vince India’s two-round total of 132 (-10) and first place finish. Iowa tied for third in the event in 2009.
The Royal Oaks Country Club will play as a 7,068-yard, par-71 for the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate. Royal Oaks Country Club was founded in 1969, and has undergone numerous renovations over the past few decades. The course is in its sixth year of hosting the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate.
The Royal Oaks Intercollegiate allows teams to play six golfers, with five scores counting towards the overall total. Senior Steven Ihm makes his fifth appearance of the fall season. Ihm tied for 51st in last year’s event. Junior Ian Vandersee returns to Dallas after winning last year’s tournament. It is his third appearance at the event. Junior Brian Bullington makes his fourth consecutive appearance in the Iowa lineup. Bullington tied for 59th in last year’s event. Junior Joseph Winslow returns to the Royal Oaks Country Club after tying for 16th in last year’s event. Sophomore Nate Yankovich makes his first appearance in the starting lineup since September’s Golfweek Conference Challenge. Freshman Raymond Knoll cracks the starting lineup for the third time this season.
The University of Iowa men’s golf team faced 13 teams ranked in the top 50 of the Golfstat.com rankings at the U.S. Collegiate last weekend, and finished ahead of six of them. At the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate, the Hawkeyes will compete against eight teams ranked in Golfstat.com’s top 50.
The Hawkeyes tied for seventh place at the U.S. Collegiate Championship in Alpharetta, Ga., on Oct. 18-20. Junior Ian Vandersee carded the lowest score for Iowa for the second straight tournament, tying for fourth with a three-round score of 212 (-4).
FIVE STRAIGHT NCAA APPEARANCES
Since taking command of the University of Iowa men’s golf program in 2007, head coach Mark Hankins has established the Hawkeyes as a competitive force in collegiate golf. Iowa has advanced to NCAA Regionals each of the past five seasons, and has advanced to the NCAA Finals three of the last five seasons.
In the first four events of the season, head coach Mark Hankins has employed four different starting lineups. All nine golfers on the Hawkeye roster have made appearances thus far in the 2013-14 season, including two freshmen, Raymond Knoll and Carson Schaake.
IHM WINS SUNNEHANNA AMATEUR
Senior Steven Ihm joined elite company as he won the 60th Annual Sunnehanna Amateur on June 16th. PGA TOUR professionals such as Rickie Fowler, Webb Simpson, and Lucas Glover won the same event early in their careers. The Peosta, Iowa, native shot an eight-under par (272) for the four-round tournament, winning by two strokes over Cory Whitsett of Alabama. A month later, Ihm earned a sponsor’s exemption to the John Deere Classic, making his first career PGA TOUR appearance. The senior birdied his first hole of the tournament, and is believed to be the first UI golfer to earn a sponsor’s exemption to the Silvis, Ill. tournament.
DEFENDING THE HARDWARE
Iowa captured two tournament titles in 2013, and will return to both venues to defend their championships this season. The Hawkeyes won the Big Four Championships in Chandler, Ariz., last February, with five players going 2-0 in match play. Iowa beat Drake, 6-0, in the first round and defeated Iowa State, 5-1, in the final round to take the title. Iowa’s second title came at the Boilermaker Invitational in West Lafayette, Ind., tying for first-place out of 18 teams. Senior Steven Ihm earned co-medalist honors just one week after medaling at the Hawkeye-Great River Entertainment Invitational in Iowa City, Iowa.
A PROGRAM ON THE RISE
Iowa has won eleven tournaments since 2008, had twelve individual medalists since 2009 and has had three All-Americans since 2008. Last season, senior Steven Ihm and junior Joseph Winslow became the 11th and 12th Iowa players to be named to the all-regional team since 2009.
HEAD COACH Mark Hankins
Head coach Mark Hankins is in his seventh season as head coach. He has guided the Hawkeyes to five straight NCAA Regional appearances, and to the NCAA Championships three times in the past five years. Iowa was ranked 155th when Hankins took over the program in 2008, yet the Hawkeyes have been consistently ranked within the top-60 for the past three years. Hankins is a native of Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.