TOURNAMENT NOTES | WATCH ON FRIDAY | WATCH ON SATURDAY
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (Seminoles.com) – Conference tournament time has arrived, and the 25th-ranked Florida State Men’s Golf team is looking to win its first ACC Championship since 2008 as it prepares for the three-day tournament this Thursday-Saturday at the Old North State Club in New London, N.C.
“The team we’re taking this week is the one that we had some success with early in the spring,” FSU head coach Trey Jones said. “We’ve messed around with the lineup a little between now and then, but we’ve settled on having our two seniors play with their experience, along with Calvin Sierota, Jamie Li and John Pak.”
The two seniors include Tallahassee native Bennett Baker and Green Cove Springs, Fla., native Corey Carlson. Both will be relied on after having made several trips to the ACC Championship. Baker and Carlson will each make their third appearance in the conference post-season, as Baker’s 9-under 207 showing last year led FSU and tied for eighth overall.
The 66th annual ACC Championship will avoid Easter and is set to being at 9 a.m. on Thursday. The Seminoles are the No. 8 seed based on ranking. The tournament will be carried live on ACC Network Extra beginning at 2 p.m. on Friday and 1 p.m. on Saturday, with Mac McDonald and Brandon Turner on the call. There is no charge for admission for fans.
Eight ACC teams are in the Golfweek/Sagarin Top 25 rankings entering the ACC Championship, including No. 4 Wake Forest, No. 5 Duke, No. 6 Georgia Tech, No. 16 Louisville, No. 18 Clemson, No. 23 North Carolina, No. 24 NC State and No. 25 Florida State.
Pak is making a strong case for ACC Golfer of the Year. The Scotch Plains, N.J., native is tied for the ACC lead with Duke’s Alex Smalley for the lowest scoring average at 69.3, and has won three tournaments this year at the Rod Myers Invitational, the Sea Best Invitational and the Mobile Sports Authority Intercollegiate. Pak is already one of just six Seminoles with 4+ wins in their career (he has four total).
Junior Jamie Li is second on the Seminoles with a 72.12 scoring average. The England native is also second on the team with 89 birdies as well as a 4.06 par 4 scoring average. Li owns two Top 10 finishes this year, including a tied for 10th finish at the Irish Creek Intercollegiate on April 6-7.
The Seminoles own five Top 5 finishes in nine tournaments this year. Four of the five Top-5 showings have come in the spring, where FSU has greatly improved from its performance in the fall.
Florida State’s trip to New London, N.C., is its third visit to the Tar Heel state this year. It finished fourth at the year-opening Rod Myers Invitational in Durham, and also finished fourth at its last tournament in the Irish Creek Collegiate held in Kannapolis, N.C.
In addition to the live streaming on portions of Friday and Saturday, live scoring throughout the tournament will be available on Golfstat.com.