Men's golf heads to Durham for season opener
LAWRENCE, Kan. – Coming off its first NCAA Regional appearance in nine years, the Kansas men’s golf team takes its first step to return to postseason when the Jayhawks travel to Durham, N.C. to open the 2016-17 campaign at the Rod Myer’s Invitational. The event will take place September 10-11 at Duke University Golf Club.
With three weeks of practice in the books, the Jayhawks seem to be fitting in just how head coach Jamie Bermel would like.
“It’s always fun to get started,” Bermel said. “As a whole, the team is working hard and getting into the swing of things with school and golf. I’ve seen a lot of positives thus far in the first couple of weeks. Now it’s about going out and playing.”
Eight players return from last year’s roster, as the Jayhawks look to earn a spot at the top of the leaderboard. KU will lean on its experience to start as senior Chase Hanna, junior Daniel Hudson, and sophomore Charlie Hillier will represent Kansas at the event. All three played in the invitational last year.
Hanna’s leadership will be pivotal as he is the lone senior competing this weekend. He comes off of a 2015-16 season where he played in every tournament, posting 14 rounds at even par or lower.
Along with the veterans, newcomers sophomore Jake Scarrow and freshman Andy Spencer will round out the Jayhawk lineup. Scarrow is a transfer from Idaho, where he averaged just 1-over par and finished tied for 21st at the NCAA Kohler Regional. Spencer, the 2016 Kansas City Star’s All-Metro Boys Golfer of the Year award winner, won the Kansas 6A Class State Title for Shawnee Mission East.
Although it takes time to adjust, Coach Bermel is excited to get the season underway and believes that the new additions to the team will help the Jayhawks achieve its goals of playing elite golf.
“It’s an adjustment period especially for our transfers,” Bermel said. “They are used to doing things a certain way and ours may be a little different. But they’re good players and they fit right into the team. Andy [Spencer] has the chance to be a pretty good player. He continues to get better and better and is competitive on the golf course.”
The seventh-annual Rod Myers Invitational will consist of a 14-team field and features four teams ranked in the Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) Top-25 poll. Wake Forest leads the way at No. 14, while Florida State (No. 18), South Florida (No. 22) and host, Duke (No. 23) are also ranked. North Carolina and Penn State, both in the field, also received votes in the latest poll. Rounding out the competition is Florida Southern, East Tennessee State, Liberty, Loyola Maryland, Princeton, UC Davis, and East Carolina.
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