Saturday, April 19, 2008
MACON, Ga. (April 19, 2008) - The 30th edition of the Atlantic Sun Conference Men's Golf Championship will take place at Château Élan's Woodlands Course marking the 10th time that the Championship will be played inside the state of Georgia, five more times than any other state. Tee times start at 8:00am on Monday.
In 2007, ETSU captured its first Atlantic Sun Men's Golf Championship and 21st in program history with a 14-shot victory at Santuary Cove in Waverly, Ga. Their margin of victory represented the second-largest in the previous 18 years trailing only Georgia State's record-setting 41-shot win in 2001. Should ETSU repeat as champions, the Buccaneers would join six other programs Centenary (1979-81), Georgia Southern (1982-83), Houston Baptist (1984-86, 1998-89), UCF (1995-96), Georgia State (2000-01) and Jacksonville State (2002-03) that have claimed back-to-back Atlantic Sun Men's Golf Championship titles.
ETSU enters the 2008 Championship as the top-ranked team in the conference, rating 20th in the most recent GolfStat.com rankings and 22nd according to the GolfWeek/Sagarin polls. UNF, second to ETSU in 2007 placed second among A-Sun teams according to both rankings, placing 46th in the GolfStat.com poll and 49th in GolfWeek/Sagarin ratings. The host, Kennesaw State cracks the top 100 in both polls, 84th in GolfWeek/Sagarin ratings and 96th on GolfStat.com.
The 2008 Atlantic Sun Championship will feature five of the top six finishers from the 2007 Championship, including the winner, ETSU's Seamus Power and the runner-up, UNF's Michael O'Neal. Power will attempt to join four other A-Sun golfers, Centenary's Hal Sutton, Southeastern Louisiana's Oliver Thompson, Troy's Josh Broadaway and Jacksonville's Duncan Stewart and the only four two-time winners of the event. Sutton (1979, 80), Broadaway (1999, 2000) and Stewart (2005, 06) each won consecutive A-Sun Championships. O'Neal owns a pair of top-five finishes at the conference championship, the aforementioned second in 2007, plus a fourth-place showing in 2006. Other top-10 finishers in 2007 returning for the 2008 edition include UNF's Jeff Dennis (tied for third), Campbell's Fredric Sundberg and ETSU's Gareth Shaw (both tied-fifth) UNF's J.C. Horne (tied for ninth).
The Woodlands, also designed by Griffiths opened in 1996. Many consider this course to be the most picturesque of the three championship layouts. The stunning 6,735 yard, par 72 course has numerous elevations presenting memorable views of sparkling lakes and tree-lined holes to give players a blissful feeling of solitude. Golf Digest rated the Woodlands among the best in Georgia with 4 ½ stars. The Woodlands is top-shelf in every way. Those in the know call it a truly outstanding and challenging course. Be prepared for rolling terrain with some blind shots.