Sunday, April 20, 2014

Who to watch for at Men's Golf Championship

The 2014 Atlantic Sun Men’s Golf Championships is being played at The Legends Course at the Chateau Elan Golf Club this weekend and it’s the culmination of a great conference year for Men’s Golf.

Several teams have claimed tournament victories, 14 combined, which ranks the Atlantic Sun among the top three conferences in the country. Individually the conference has also shined over the course of the season as nine players won individual medalist honors.

As the first round gets underway the A-Sun Insider provides some insight into who is riding a wave of success heading into this year’s championship.

MJ Maguire from North Florida looks to become the first back-to-back individual medalist winner since 2005-06, when Jacksonville's Duncan Stewart accomplished the feat. Maguire comes into this year’s championship off a victory at the Irish Creek Collegiate, where he shot a career-best round of 64. The junior from St. Petersburg, Fla., has a 72.10 stroke average this season and has recorded five top-10 finishes. In the latest Golfweek rankings he ranks 37th individually, highest among A-Sun competitors. Maguire shot a 71 (-1) and is two shots off the lead after round one. 

Next on the Golfweek rankings and one of the players to watch is Kennesaw State’s Jimmy Beck. Beck ranks 59th and also has one individual title this year. He won the Farms Collegiate Invitational back in February. His stroke average is 72.27 coming into the championships. The junior looks to make his mark at the conference championship this season. Beck like Maguire shot a 71 in round one and is only two shots off the lead.

Trey Rule leads a very strong Mercer team to this week’s championship as he currently ranks 74th individually, third among A-Sun competitors. As a team Mercer finished in the top-5 in nine of ten tournaments played this season. Rule has the best stroke average among A-Sun players this season at 71.27. Rule continued his fine form in the opening round with a 71, tied for second.

Teremoana Beaucousin from Kennesaw State established himself as the number two player on the Owls team throughout the spring. He finished inside the top-10 on five different occasions and shot a low round of 67. The freshman from Tahiti recorded his best finish at the Colleton River Collegiate, finishing in third. He leads after firing an opening round 69, two shots clear of the field. 

Mercer’s James Beale has been one of the most consistent players this year and looks to make his mark at this year’s championship. The senior from Auckland is coming into this week with three top-5 finishes in his last four events. He has carded five rounds this season of 67 or better, which is the most in the A-Sun. Beale is tied for sixth, after posting a 73 (+1) in the first round.

Those are some of the names to keep an eye on as teams compete at Chateau Elan Golf Club. 

For full results from the opening round click here

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