By Jake Stamps
The UMHB Fall Invitational was a huge win for the Lady Cru and Crusader golf teams. Both defended their golf course homes with wins in their division.
New rankings from Golf World magazine, rated the Lady Cru No. 14 in the nation in the NGCA Top 25 D-III Poll.
Head women’s golf Coach Darla Kirby said, “This is exciting, and we will be able to get to play against rival UT- Tyler in our next tournament.”
UT-Tyler ranked one spot ahead of the Lady Cru in the poll. The women’s tournament was played at Wildflower Country Club in Temple where they posted a 15-stroke victory to win the team competition.
After the first day of competition, Kirby said, “It was awesome to be leading the tournament over high quality teams such as Texarkana Community College and Tyler Junior College because both schools are ranked high in the nation in their NCAA division.”
The Lady Cru reached their goal by “doing better the first day,” Kirby noted. They improved the second day by one stroke to secure the UMHB Fall Invitational victory.
Kelly Gonyea, the ASC Conference Player of the Week of Sept. 26-27 led the team. Gonyea, a sophomore accounting major, won the individual tournament by two strokes.
“My teammates are awesome, and the team is the strongest I have seen at UMHB,” she said.
Victoria Thane, Taylor O’Rear, Sara Eckert and others also contributed.
Sophomore business administration major Eckert said, “Winning our last tournament was awesome because we were at our home course. We knew the course and how it would play, so we definitely had an advantage over the other teams.”
Despite being already at the top of the conference, the team is young. It consists of four freshmen, three sophomores and one junior. Being young is not a bad thing with wins already under their belt, and fans may anticipate more good things to come to the Lady Cru’s future.
The men’s team was also recognized in Golf World magazine’s NGCA Top 25 D-III Poll. In their tournament, which was held at Stonetree Golf Course in Killeen, the men won the D-III Division with a seven-stroke lead.
Head men’s golf Coach Aaron Rodeffer said, “I am very pleased with being second overall only to be behind Tyler Junior College and winning the D-III Division.”
The Crusaders fell by two strokes in the overall division but were victorious in the D-III battle. Robby Schimmels, a sophomore accounting major, was awarded ASC Conference Player of the Week for Sept. 25-27 for his performance at the Invitational.
Schimmels tied with fellow Crusader Bryce Myburgh for second place individually. Johnathan Sustaita, Evan Kaye and others also contributed to the Invitational win.
Schimmels said, “We are young and hungry to win conference this year. We have the ability to beat the number one ranked UT-Tyler.”