Oct. 7, 2005
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - With apologies to the Western films of yesteryear, the town of Boise, Idaho ain't big enough for two squads of Broncos. The Santa Clara golf teams will seek to be the top Broncos as the men take part in the Boise State Bronco Invitational and the women will tee off in the Bronco Fall Invitational this Monday and Tuesday.
The men's squad, coming off of an exciting victory at the Purple and Red Invitaional two weeks ago in Layton, Utah, enters this Boise State tournament ranked No. 50 in Golf Week's Collegiate Top 50, the highest Santa Clara has ever been ranked. They will seek to build off of this early-season success with another strong showing against a field of 13 other schools, including WCC rivals Loyola Marymount and Portland.
Much like two weeks ago, the quintet of seniors Eric Lillibridge, Michael Nicoletti and John Colyar, junior Jong Yoon and sophomore Tim Lynch will take to the links at a course they have never played before, this time at Boise's Crane Creek Country Club. Led by the play of Lillibridge, who currently stands at No. 104 in the nation's individual rankings and finished third in the individual competition in Layton, Santa Clara will look to play with the same fire that spurred them to a late charge to victory two weeks ago.
"We have really a senior-led squad, and I think that they are going to play with more confidence," men's head coach Rob Miller said regarding the effect the win in Utah may have on his team. "I think their expectations were already pretty high. It will affect them positively as opposed to them feeling more pressure to perform. They're a pretty savvy and experienced group and I expect that they are going to make a positive out of that."
The women, meanwhile, under the watch of head coach Polly Schulze, will take to the links at Boise's Par-71 BanBury Golf Club on Monday morning. Junior Megan Stoddart, a transfer from Hawaii, qualified to play No. 1 in her first event as a Bronco. Veterans Samantha Trask, Candice Palmer and Corey Utsurogi also provide strong play for the squad, while sophomore Hilaire Fouts rounds out the quintet as she is set to make her Broncos debut. Senior Eriko Sato also qualified to play in the event as an individual competitor and will be making the trip with the team.
"The team is very excited to get on the road and test themselves in a competitive atmosphere," Schulze said. "This is our first competition of the season and in light of the fact that we have the most experienced and most talented team to date, we are pretty fired up!"
Monday's competition for both events will consist of two rounds of play, while the teams return to their respective courses Tuesday morning for the final round.