Golf Returns to NCAA Postseason
May 7, 2012
HOUSTON - For only the second time since 2002, the University of Houston golf team will compete in the NCAA postseason.
The Cougars were selected as the No. 10 seed for the NCAA Athens Regional, hosted by Georgia. The three-day, 54-hole event will be held at the University of Georgia Course in Athens, Ga., beginning May 17 and concluding on May 19. The announcement was made Monday evening during the Selection Show on NCAA.com.
"I am proud of our team and our student-athletes and so happy for our fans. Tonight's selection continues to show the improvement and progress we are making in our program," said head coach Jonathan Dismuke, who is only in his third year with the Cougars. "We are happy to be back in the NCAA postseason and looking forward to heading to Athens next week."
The Cougars will square off against No. 1 seed Alabama. No. 2 North Florida, No. 3 New Mexico, No. 4 Georgia, No. 5 Iowa, No. 6 and Conference USA-rival East Carolina, No. 7 Long Beach State, No. 8 and two-time defending national champion Augusta State, No. 9. Wake Forest, No. 11 UT Arlington, No. 12 UNC Wilmington and No. 13 Loyola (Md.).
Joe David (Mississippi), Jacobo Pastor (Charleston Southern), Trey Valentine (USF), Chad Ramey (Mississippi State), Sebastian Soderberg (Coastal Carolina), Brandon Pena (Florida Gulf Coast), James Beale (Mercer), David Denlinger (Charleston Southern), Kamito Hirai (Winthrop) and Clay Myers (Jackson State) were selected as individual participants.
"When you get into the postseason, every field is balanced and talented, and this Regional field is certainly no exception," Dismuke said. "There are many strong teams, and we will be competing on a great course."
Eighty-one teams and 45 individuals not from those teams were selected to compete at six NCAA Regional sites across the nation. The top five teams and the top individual not from those teams will advance to the NCAA Championships on May 29-June 3 at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif.
The Cougars, who have won 16 NCAA team national championships during their history, will be making their 15th NCAA Regional appearance since 1989. Since that time, the Cougars have enjoyed one team championship, two individual titles and six top-five finishes in Regional play.
Houston last competed as a team in NCAA Regional play in 2006. That year, the Cougars tied for 17th at the Omni Tucson National Golf Club. Jordan Irwin (2007) and Zach Mowbray (2004) played as individuals during their respective seasons.
The Cougars were part of an impressive showing by Conference USA, which saw seven schools selected for NCAA Regionals. Houston joined East Carolina, SMU, Tulsa, C-USA Championships winner Memphis, UCF and UAB in the postseason.
"We are fortunate to have a lot of competition in Conference USA," DIsmuke said. "This year, our C-USA Championships was a mini-version of a regional. We have had the luxury of seeing a lot of good teams throughout the year, and that helped forge us into the team that we are."