2013 Conference USA individual champion Roman Robledo
Aug 19, 2013
HOUSTON - Ten regular-season tournaments, including four in the fall, highlight the University of Houston Men's Golf schedule, director of golf Jonathan Dismuke announced Monday.
The Cougars, who are ranked No. 17 in GolfWeek's preseason national rankings, will compete in four tournaments during the fall schedule and will play in six events in the spring before traveling to their first American Athletic Conference Championships. Houston will battle in eight states and two countries in 2013-14.
"I really like what we have in front of us. We have a lot of staples in our lineup combined with some exciting new tournaments for us," Dismuke said. "The strength of our schedule has improved. We want to play at championship courses in different parts of the country to prepare for NCAA Regionals and NCAA Championships. That's always been our philosophy."
The Cougars open the fall season at the Northern Intercollegiate on Sept. 6-8 at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill.
From there, the Cougars will compete at the GolfWeek Conference Challenge on Sept. 15-17 at Spirit Hollow Golf Course in Burlington, Iowa. One representative from each conference will compete at this event, and the Cougars were selected to represent the American Athletic Conference.
For the fifth consecutive year, Houston will battle at the Fighting Irish Gridiron Classic on Sept. 23-24 on the Warren Course at Notre Dame Golf Club. A year ago, Houston tied for second as a team, while seniors Curtis Reed and Jesse Droemer each posted top-10 finishes.
The Cougars close out the fall season on Oct. 5-6 when they compete at the David Toms Intercollegiate, hosted by LSU at the University Club in Baton Rouge, La. Last season, the Cougars tied for sixth at the NCAA Baton Rouge Regional at this venue.
After more than four months away from the schedule, the Cougars open the spring season at their own Bayou City Collegiate Championship. Houston, which is co-hosting the event with Rice for the second straight season, will compete on the Tournament Course at Redstone Golf Club, home of the Dave Williams Golf Academy.
On March 2-4, the Cougars will make an international trip when they take part at the Querencia Cabo Intercollegiate. Hosted by SMU, this tournament will be played at Querencia Golf Club in Querencia, Los Cabos, Mexico.
From there, the Cougars close out the month of March by hosting a pair of tournaments. The Cougars play host to the Border Olympics at Laredo Country Club in Laredo, Texas on March 14-15. Last season, Houston captured the team title with a score of 859, while senior Wesley McClain, junior Kyle Pilgrim, senior Bryn Flanagan and junior Roman Robledo each tallied top-10 finishes.
For the first time in school history, the Cougars join with Arkansas to play host at The Floridian Intercollegiate on March 24-25 at The Floridian Golf Club in Palm City, Fla. Houston Astros owner Jim Crane purchased this venue in 2010 and turned it into one of the nation's premier golf clubs.
Houston opens the month of April at the Insperity Augusta State Invitational, hosted by Augusta State at Forest Hills Golf Club in Augusta, Ga., on April 5-6, and then takes part at the BancorpSouth Intercollegiate at Reunion Golf and Country Club in Madison Miss., on April 12-13.
With the conclusion of the regular season, Houston takes its first step in the postseason at the American Athletic Conference Championships at Daniel Island Golf Club on April 27-29 in Charleston, S.C. The winner of the three-day, 54-hole event earns the league automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals.
"There will be a lot of good golf played in this conference, and there are a lot of good players. We have a great venue for a conference championship, so it should be interesting," Dismuke said. "I expect it to be one of the strongest golf conferences in the nation."
The Cougars look to make their third straight team appearance in the NCAA Regionals, which tee off May 15-17 at various site around the country. The top teams from each Regional advance to the NCAA Championships slated for May 27-June 1 at Prairie Dunes Country Club in Hutchinson, Kan.
Houston is looking for it first team appearance at the NCAA Championships since 2001.
ABOUT THE COUGARS
A year ago, the Cougars posted eight top-three team finishes with team titles at the Lone Star Invitational and Border Olympics during the regular season.
Houston then ended its stay in Conference USA by sweeping both the team and individual championships at Texarkana Country Club. Robledo captured the individual title for the first championship of his collegiate career, while the Cougars earned their first time title since 2001.
Robledo, fellow All-Conference USA First-Team honoree Reed, Second-Team selection McClain and C-USA All-Freshman Team member Vincent Martino return to lead the Cougars in their first season in the American Athletic Conference.
After sitting out the entire 2012-13 season, senior James Ross also returns, and sophomore Blair Hamilton recently advanced to the Round of 32 at the U.S. Amateur Championship at Brookline, Mass. He became the first Cougar since 1999 to win in Match Play at the nation's premier amateur event.