The Georgia Tech golf team’s place in the NCAA finals was not the foregone conclusion it has often been.
The Yellow Jackets have won or shared the NCAA regional title six times and have advanced to the NCAA finals 23 times in 25 regionals trips. But it was a bit dicey late, as the Jackets were actually out of qualifying position early in the third and final round.
However, Tech’s four scoring participants played the final six holes in 9-under-par to finish third at the San Diego regional at the Farms Golf Club to advance to the NCAA championship finals starting May 29 in Bradenton, Fla. The Jackets needed to finish in the top five of the 13-team field to make the finals.
“Those last six holes were some of the best golf we have ever played,” coach Bruce Heppler said in a news release. “I’m really proud of how we competed down the stretch. This was a total team effort.”
All-American Ollie Schniederjans led Tech at 2-under-par, good for a tie for seventh. He played his final six holes in 4-under. Anders Albertson and Chris Petefish followed at 1-over (T14). James Clark (6-over, T29) and Vincent Whaley (9-over, T49) both contributed scores. Whaley played the final 10 holes of the third round at even par, helping stabilize the Jackets.
The Jackets ended up making the field with a little breathing room at 5-over-par. Virginia was the last team in at 10-over, two shots ahead of sixth place.
Georgia finished a stroke back of the Jackets and will also be in Bradenton, the only two state teams to advance.
Three All-ACC baseball selections
The Tech baseball team had three players named to the All-ACC team – third baseman Matt Gonzalez, DH/utility player A.J. Murray and pitcher Brandon Gold. Outfielder Kel Johnson was named to the all-freshman team.
Going into the ACC tournament, Gonzalez is hitting .289 with five RBI and 42 RBI, second most on the team. Gonzalez has started his past 120 games, a team best.
Murray is second in home runs with 15 and is in the top 10 in doubles, home runs and RBI. He has started all 54 games this season, splitting between catcher, first base, right field (10 and designated hitter.
Pitching after never having done so in his freshman season, Gold is 7-3 with 71 strikeouts, tying him for fifth in the ACC in wins. His 71/25 strikeout/walk ratio is best on the team. He is 5-0 in series rubber games, with all five in ACC play (Virginia, Clemson, Notre Dame, Virginia Tech and Duke).
Johnson hit .302 overall and .314 in ACC play (highest on the team). His 10 home runs were most in ACC play, achieved despite playing in only 39 of 54 games because of a sprained ankle.
Tennis at NCAAs
Freshman tennis player Chris Eubanks will play his first-round match in the NCAA men’s singles championship Wednesday in Waco, Texas, at Baylor. Paige Hourigan, also a freshman, will be in the women’s field.
Both fields are 64.
Hourigan and Kendal Woodard will be in the 32-team doubles championship that starts Thursday.
Cremins honored by American Cancer Society
Georgia Tech coaching great Bobby Cremins will be honored as the first inductee into the Coaches vs. Cancer Circle of Honor June 7 at the Loews Hotel in Atlanta. Cremins has been a frequent fund-raiser for the American Cancer Society.
“The American Cancer Society, in conjunction with the NABC, is pleased to recognize Bobby Cremins as the first inductee into the Coaches vs. Cancer Circle of Honor,” said Robert E. Youle, chair of the American Cancer Society Board of Directors, in a statement. “During his many years of coaching college basketball, Coach Cremins has not only accrued an outstanding winning record but has provided strong support for Coaches vs. Cancer and the role it plays in the fight against cancer.”
Coaches vs. Cancer is a collaboration between the American Cancer Society and the National Association of Basketball coaches and seeks to raise cancer awareness and also promote healthy living. The initiative has also raised more than $93 million to support the ACS.
As is his way, Cremins has sometimes referred to the NABC’s cause as “Coaches for Cancer.”
Track at ACC championships
The Tech track and field teams put five team members on the All-ACC roll at the ACC championship meet this past weekend in Tallahassee, Fla.
The men’s team had three: pole vaulter Nathan Daniel (sixth place 4.97 meters, or 16’ 3 ½”), Jeremy Greenwald in the 1,500 meters (fourth, 3:48.42) and Brandon Lasater in the 800 and 1,500 (fourth, 1:49.46; fifth, 3:48.55).
For the women, pole vaulter Samantha Becker (third, 4.21 meters, 13’ 9 ¾”) and Bailey Weiland in the high jump (fifth place, 1.75 meters, 5’8 ¾”) were named All-ACC.
The Tech men finished 13th while the women’s team was 15th. Both teams will compete at the NCAA East preliminaries May 28-30 in Jacksonville, Fla.
Roof on Glanton
At an event for the Albany Georgia Tech Club, defensive coordinator Ted Roof offered some encouraging update on Brentavious Glanton, a 2015 signee at defensive end, in an interview with the Albany Herald. Glanton is 6-foot-2, 280 pounds.
Said Roof, “He has a chance to come in and compete at an area where every program in America is looking to increase their depth. We’re very excited about him. He’s a fine player and a fine young man that comes from a great family.”