January 30, 2006

Men's Golf Prepares for Spring Season

Jan. 30, 2006

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Santa Clara men's golf team will kick off the 2006 spring season next Monday at the Rice Intercollegiate. The event will be hosted by the Owls at the Willowisp Country Club in Missouri City, Texas. The two-day competition is the first of seven tournaments scheduled for the Broncos this spring.

Santa Clara looks to build on its momentum from one of the most successful fall seasons in Bronco history. Earlier this season, the team captured titles at the Purple and Red Invitational in Salt Lake City, Utah and at the Bronco Fall Invitational in Boise, Idaho. Additionally, the Broncos finished in the top two in three of the four events they competed in and finished in the top five in all four events.

The Broncos boast an experienced group of players this season, as seniors Michael Nicoletti, Eric Lillibridge and John Colyar will lead the Broncos into the spring season. Nicoletti and Colyar are the current captains of the squad.

"The senior leadership has been instrumental in the success of the team this fall," said head coach Rob Miller. "They lead by example, work hard in practice, in school, at training sessions and are gentlemen on the golf course. This work ethic gets passed down to the underclassmen."

Nicoletti currently leads the Broncos with an overall 72.33 round average and 16 career top-25 finishes. The Dos Palos native completed four under-par rounds in the fall and took second place in the Boise State Bronco Invitational in mid-October. Lillibridge also shot four under-par rounds and posted two top-10 finishes. Veteran Colyar returns for his redshirt senior year with the Broncos, bringing five years of valuable collegiate experience. This fall, Colyar shot a career-low 68 at the SCU Invitational to earn him a top-10 finish in the tournament.

The Bronco quintet is rounded out by junior Jong Yoon and sophomore Tim Lynch. So far in his career, Yoon has notched 13 top-25 finishes, including three in the fall. He also shot three under-par rounds and tied a career-low of 67 with his second round performance at the Boise State Bronco Invitational in October. Lynch, a sophomore from Lake Forest, Illinois, enters the spring season with a 74.42 stroke average. He garnered two top-20 finishes in the fall and completed four par or under-par rounds.

The Broncos also boast a solid trio of newcomers for the 2005-06 season. Freshmen Jonathan Keane of Edmonds, Wash., Garrett Logan of Henderson, Nev. and Mike Miller of Fresno all showed promise at the SCU Invitational in late October. Keane shot two par rounds in the event for a sixth place finish in his first outing as a Bronco.

The Broncos spring season continues Feb. 27-28 at the Anteater Invitational hosted by UC Irvine at the Mesa Verde Country Club in Costa Mesa. In March, the Broncos will compete in the Braveheart Classic in Beaumont followed by an appearance at the Western Intercollegiate in Santa Cruz where the Broncos have earned top-20 finishes in each of the past two seasons. The Broncos will also appear in the Pacific Coast Intercollegiate in early April followed by an appearance in an event hosted by Bay Area rival St. Mary's at Poppy Hills Golf Club in Pebble Beach. The season will be capped off by the annual WCC Championships in mid-April. The Broncos finished third in the conference event in 2005.

"The schedule is tough this spring but we will enter each event preparing to and expecting to win," says Miller. "I know the guys are determined to make this the best season that Santa Clara golf has ever had and I am confident they'll make it happen."