The Edmond Sun

April 30, 2011

UCO ready for regionals


The Edmond Sun

EDMOND — Top-ranked Central Oklahoma looks to continue a dominating year and earn a spot in the NCAA Division II Men’s Golf Championships when the Bronchos head to Georgetown, Ky. for the start of the South Central/Central Regional.

UCO, No. 1 in both the Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) poll and head-to-head statistical rankings by golfstat.com, will be one of 20 teams to compete in the three-day, 54-hole tournament at the par-72 Cherry Blossom Golf Club.

The Bronchos will be in the first group off the tee Monday morning, starting at 7:30 a.m. Tee times the final two days will be determined by the team standings.

Joining UCO in the 20-team field will be No. 5, Abilene Christian, No. 18 Central Missouri, No. 19 Indianapolis, Cameron, St. Mary’s, Midwestern State, St. Edward’s, Newman, Washburn, Northeastern State, Missouri-St. Louis, Drury, Grand Valley State, Wayne State, Ashland, Northern Kentucky, Ferris State, Bellarmine and Lewis.

The top-five teams and top-two players not with a team from each of four regionals advance to the finals, set for May 16-20 in Florence, Ala.

UCO has enjoyed an amazing year, having won a school-record eight tournaments in 11 tries. The Bronchos finished runner-up in two other tournaments and captured their first Lone Star Conference title since 2003 in San Antonio, Texas on April 20, clipping Cameron by nine strokes.

“We’ve had a great year to this point, but that doesn’t carry any weight in this tournament and it doesn’t matter if we don’t perform at the regional,” UCO coach Dax Johnston said. “This is the biggest tournament of the season and I’m confident our guys are ready and will continue to play they have all year.”

Senior star and two-time All-American Colby Shrum leads the Bronchos with an impressive 70.7 scoring average, having won a school-record five individual titles this year. Sophomore Josh Creel has a 71.3 average and nine top-10 finishes, including two championships.

Juniors Andrew Green (72.0) and Baer Aneshansley (73.9) and sophomore Chris Muriana (75.0) round out the team that will be looking to gain UCO’s first national tournament berth since 2005.