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Ohio Men's Golf Readies For 2018 MAC Championships

Ohio Men's Golf Readies For 2018 MAC Championships

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2018 MAC Championships Central | 2018 MAC Championships Golfstat Live Scoring | 2017-18 MAC Statistics

ATHENS, Ohio -- The Ohio men's golf team heads to Sycamore Hills Golf Club in Fort Wayne, Ind., this weekend (April 27-29) to compete in the 72nd annual Mid-American Conference Championships. The Bobcats have their sights set on capturing the 19th league tournament title in program history.

The three-day, 72-hole event gets underway with first and second-round action on Friday (April 27) beginning at 8:30 a.m. ET. The third and fourth rounds are slated for Saturday (April 28) and Sunday (April 29), respectively, and will get underway at 8 a.m. ET both days.

The 2018 MAC Championships field is made up of Ohio, host Ball State, Akron, Bowling Green, Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Miami, Northern Illinois and Toledo. The Golden Flashes are ranked No. 30 in Golfstat's national rankings followed by the RedHawks (76), Rockets (110), Eagles (128), Cardinals (140), Huskies (148), Falcons (154), Zips (178) and Bobcats (237).

The par-72, 7,331-yard Sycamore Hills Golf Club is a Jack Nicklaus signature designed course that opened in 1989. This weekend's MAC Championships mark the first time the event will be held in Fort Wayne and just the sixth time it has come to the state of Indiana.

The Bobcats are taking aim at winning their first MAC title since 1980. Ohio also won the league tournament in 1951, '52, '53, '54 (tie), '55, '57, '58, '59, '60, '61, '63, '64, '65, '67, '69, '71 and '79. The Green & White took third place at the 2017 MAC Championships, which were held April 28-30 at The Virtues Golf Club in Nashport, Ohio. The Bobcats posted a combined three-day total of 1,183 (303, 296, 289, 295; +31). Tom Nettles (McMurray, Pa.) was the high finisher for Ohio, using a final-round 72 (E) to claim seventh place with a 290 (+2). Kent State won the event with a combined total of 1,149 (287, 288, 285, 289; -3). Kent State sophomore Gisli Sveinbergsson took medalist honors at the 2017 MAC Championships by shooting a 280 (-8), utilizing rounds of 68 (-4), 70, (-2) 71 (-1) and 71 (-1). The last Bobcat to earn medalist honors at the MAC Championships was Terry Beard in 1967.

Nettles will represent Ohio at the 2018 MAC Championships alongside redshirt junior David Yang (Huntersville, N.C.), junior Ben Sattler (Liberty Township, Ohio) and freshmen Zach Crawford (Vandalia, Ohio) and Austin Dyson (Dublin, Ohio) under the direction of 30th-year head coach Bob Cooley. 

Cooley will be retiring at the conclusion of the 2017-18 season. He has served as the program's head coach since 1988 and was promoted to Director of Golf in Sept. 2002, assuming administrative and coaching duties for both the men's and women's teams at Ohio. Cooley has guided his alma mater to nine top-five finishes at the Mid-American Conference Championships. The Bobcats have finished in the top three on four occasions -- including second-place finishes in 2002 and '04 and third-place finishes in 2012 and '17. Cooley was named MAC Coach of the Year following the 2001-02 campaign. The 12-best three-round team totals in program history have been achieved under his watch, and he has coached six golfers who have accounted for seven of the top-10 best season averages in program history.

The winner of the 2018 MAC Championships will receive the league's automatic bid to one of six NCAA Regionals, which are set to be held May 15-17 at six sites -- Lonnie Poole Golf Course (Raleigh, N.C.), Traditions Club (Bryan, Texas), Scarlet Course/OSU Golf Course (Columbus, Ohio), Reunion Resort (Kissimmee, Fla.), Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club (Norman, Okla.) and The Reserve at Spanos Park (Stockton, Calif.).

The 2018 NCAA Championship runs May 25-30 and will be held at Karsten Creek in Stillwater, Okla.