TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Seminoles.com) – Fall golf is back in full swing for the 18th-ranked Florida State Men’s Golf team. FSU travels to Duke University Golf Club in Durham, N.C., to partake in the Rod Myers Invitational held Sept. 10-11. In order to earn the right to play this weekend in the 2016-17 season opener, FSU’s 11 active golfers competed in a qualifier amongst themselves to see who could finish among the Top five. Making the trip to Durham will be redshirt junior Harry Ellis, seniors Josh Lee and Cristobal Del Solar, sophomore Corey Carlson and redshirt freshman Jonathan Keppler. Sophomore Bennett Baker will also compete individually.
The recent preparation hasn’t been easy considering the Hurricane conditions that damaged many parts of the Big Bend area. However, FSU head coach Trey Jones has been impressed with his team’s ability to play through the circumstances.
“We worked through some challenging living and practice conditions in preparation for this opportunity,” Jones said. “I am really impressed with this team’s resilience as not one complained about anything associated with the hurricane.
“We completed six qualifying rounds and each one of these guys earned their position. This is always an exciting time of year and now it’s time to see where we are as individuals and a team.”
The 14-team tournament is named after longtime Duke head coach Rod Myers, who passed away in 2007 following a bout with leukemia.
“This is a golf tournament that I have wanted to compete in for a long time,” Jones added. “Rod Myers was a mentor to many of us and to bring a team to Duke and play in a tournament with his name on it means a lot to me.”
Joining FSU and No. 23 Duke in the field are No. 14 Wake Forest, 22nd-ranked USF, East Carolina, East Tennessee State, Florida Southern, Kansas, Liberty, Loyola (Md.), North Carolina, Penn State, Princeton and UC Davis.
The event will include three rounds consisting of 54 holes, with 36 holes of play on Saturday and the final 18-hole round on Sunday. Tee times will start at 7:35 a.m. on both days.
For FSU, the first round tee times include Keppler at 8:22 a.m., Carlson at 8:31 a.m., Del Solar at 8:40 a.m., Lee at 8:49 a.m. and Ellis at 8:58 a.m.
Florida State looks to stay with recent history when it comes to season-opening success. Last year, FSU won the prestigious Olympia Fields/Fighting Illini Invitational at 6-over and was boosted by a single-round tournament record 273 in the first round. FSU has finished first or second in three of its last four season-opening tournaments.
FSU is currently on a run of making five consecutive NCAA Championship appearances, the longest active streak in the ACC while tying for the sixth-longest nationally. In terms of conference supremacy, the Seminoles have produced multiple All-ACC golfers in each of the last 10 years.
Saturday and Sunday’s rounds can be accessed on your mobile device or laptop via golfstat.com.
Follow the FSU Men’s Golf Team on its official Twitter handle (@FSUGolf) as well as on the team’s official Facebook page (Facebook.com/FSUMensGolf).