Saginaw Valley State, Alabama also clinch berths
March 13, 2017 by Baker Helton in Recap with 0 comments
Perennial powerhouse and 2015 National Collegiate Disc Golf Champions Ferris State Univeristy look, once again, like a title contender.
The Bulldogs completed an impressive victory at the Tigertown Throwdown this weekend in Central, South Carolina, dismantling the rest of the 17-team field and shooting a total of 469 to beat second place North Carolina State (486) by 17 strokes. Clemson rounded out the top three with a combined team total of 490. The win was Ferris State’s second of the season, as they also took the Great Lakes Collegiate Open last fall.
The tournament had a strong field, with the top seven teams — Ferris State A and B, North Carolina State, Clemson A and B, and East Carolina University — already qualified for the NCDGC. The tournaments’ two bids, therefore, went to eighth place Saginaw Valley State University, who shot a total of 509, and Alabama, who shot a 510.
Ferris State’s Brendan Tetloff attributed the victory to the team’s preparation over their spring break.
“Coming down a week ahead of the tournament definitely made a huge difference,” Tetloff said. “The trust and support we developed as a team was probably the deciding factor.”
The team’s coach, Dr. Leonard Johnson, gave also said the extra lead time was instrumental in the win.
“The team prepared by spending time together, going hole by hole discussing strategy, identifying strengths, and practicing shots from intentionally designated locations,” Johnson said.
Now, the team must prepare for the National Collegiate Disc Golf Championships, which kick off in just a few short weeks. Tetloff seemed optimistic about the squad’s chances.
“We are pumped, excited, and confident,” Tetloff said. “But, that said, we still have a few things we can improve upon as a team. Our depth will definitely give us an advantage when all four singles scores are tallied.”
Johnson hopes that the team’s recent success does not turn give them a false sense of security heading into the NCDGC.
“I am a little concerned that there might be a tendency for the guys to get a little over confident and perhaps even complacent,” Johnson said. “My job over the next couple weeks will be to help them to stay focused.”
In college action from the previous weekend, four more teams were able to secure their NCDGC spots University of Nevada-Reno, Humboldt State, Portland State, and South Carolina all were awarded spots to the big dance.
Out West, Oregon looked to continue their perfect collegiate season with a victory at the Northwest Collegiate Invitational, but the short-handed Ducks’ momentum was halted by Portland State. The Vikings held a two stroke lead over the Ducks going into the final round, and the tournament looked to be setting up for an epic finish, until some bad luck left Oregon without one of their top players.
Oregon’s Mason Caldwell, who fell ill during the first round, had to sit out the final round, forcing the Ducks to make a substitution. Oregon tried to substitute in one of their “B” team players, but that was deemed as illegal by tournament staff. Instead, Oregon’s top women’s player, Reily Warren, filled in for Caldwell. In the final round, Portland State was able to pull ahead and ended up with a cumulative score of 471 to beat the Ducks’ 478 by seven strokes.
The tournament had three NCDGC bids to award, and Oregon and Portland State had already qualified. As a result, UNR, Humboldt, and Portland Community College were given those three bids by default.
In Atlanta, the Georgia Tech Invitational saw stiff competition between South Carolina, University of Tennesee-Martin, and Augusta University. The singles round saw South Carolina jump out to an early lead with a cumulative total of 188. UT-Martin found themselves with a score of 190 to sit two strokes behind, and Augusta’s 191 was good for the third spot. Georgia Tech and Georgia Southern rounded out the field at a 198.
In the final team doubles round, Augusta shot the hot round of a 52 to put pressure on the leading Gamecocks. South Carolina, however, held on to the win – and a bid to the NCDGC – with a 53.
Full attention now turns to the NCDGC, which will be heldApril 12-15 at the Hippodrome Disc Golf Complex in North Augusta, South Carolina. The PDGA major will crown the 2016-2017 individual and team collegiate national champions. Stay tuned to Ultiworld Disc Golf for complete coverage of the final showdown of the college season.