Showdown In The West
May 16, 2001
THE FACTS--The No. 6 USC men's golf team heads to the NCAA West Regional Men's Golf Championship to be held May 17-19 at the Trysting Tree Golf Club in Corvallis, Ore. The Regional will consist of 27 teams, plus six individuals. The teams will play a total of 54 holes, 18 each day. All three rounds begin at 7:30 a.m. PDT from the first and tenth tees. The final groups will begin play at 1:21 p.m. PDT Thursday, and 1:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The NCAA Men's Division I Golf Committee will determine the number of teams that will advance to the national championship finals. The two lowest scoring individuals, whose teams do not advance to the finals, will qualify for the Championships. The NCAA Championships are scheduled for May 30-June 2 at the Duke University Golf Club in Durham, North Carolina.
LAST YEAR'S WEST REGIONALS--The Trojans finished fourth at the 2000 NCAA West Regionals in Fresno, Calif., behind strong showings from Alex Kuyumjian and Nick Jones (both finished tied for ninth). USC tied its season-low with a 54-hole total of 848, including a season-low 275 in the second round.
SO FAR THIS YEAR--The Trojans are in the midst of their finest season since 1997, with three tournament wins to their credit, including their first Pac-10 Championship since 1986 ... USC has finished in the top 6 of every tournament but two ... Troy won the Taylor Made Red River Classic, the Ping Arizona and the Pac-10s and finished second at the Windon Memorial ... The Trojans had a season-low round of 271 at the Red River.
FRESHMAN SENSATION--Hunter Mahan, ranked 18th in the individual rankings, won back-to-back tournaments in the fall and leads the Trojans with a stroke average of 71.08. He has shot 204 twice this season, has a low round of 63 (the lowest-known round in Trojan history) and has six top 10 finishes under his belt. For his efforts, he was named Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and All-Pac-10 first team.
STEADY SENIORS--Seniors Alex Kuyumjian and Nick Jones are having fine seasons as well for the Trojans. Kuyumjian is second on the team with a stroke average of 71.96, including four top 10 finishes and an individual championship (at the PING Arizona). Jones is third on the squad with a stroke average of 72.45, including four top 10 finishes. Kuyumjian was named All-Pac-10 first team, while Jones made the All-Pac-10 second team.
KURT SCHUETTE--In his seventh season at USC, Kurt Schuette has the Trojans back in the elite ranks of collegiate golf. Troy has been in the top 10 for most of the 2000-2001 season and recently won its first Pac-10 team title since 1986. Schuette came to USC in 1994-95 and wasted no time in reestablishing Trojan golf on the national scene. In his first three seasons, Schuette's teams made the cut at the NCAA Finals, including two top 10 finishes and a No. 3 national ranking. In 1994-95, his first season as a head coach at Troy, Schuette directed the USC men's golf team well beyond expectations . . . all the way to a fifth-place finish at the 1995 NCAA Championships, and he earned District VIII Coach of the Year honors (Pac-10, Big West and WCC). It was USC's highest national finish in 20 years and the eight strokes that separated USC from the championship matched the closest Troy has ever been to the national title. Then in 1995-96, he led the Trojan men's team to its second consecutive Top 10 finish with a ninth-place showing at the NCAAs. And under his guidance, Brian Hull earned first-team All-American honors. Schuette was also honored by being selected to serve on the NCAA District VIII Advisory Committee. In 1996-97, Schuette kept the Trojans ranked between No. 3 and No. 7 all year with three All-Americans in the lineup and eventually finished 14th at the NCAAs. After graduating six players, his young men's teams didn't qualify for the NCAAs in 1997-98 or 1998-99 (though Jorge Corral did qualify as an individual in '99), but they rebounded nicely in 1999-2000, finishing fourth at the NCAA West Regional to qualify for the NCAA tournament at Opelika, Ala. Though they missed the cut at that tourney, the Trojans showed the mettle neccessary to compete at the highest levels of collegiate golf. Schuette, 38, came to USC after six successful seasons (1988-94) at Pepperdine. During his tenure in Malibu, he led the Waves to four WCC crowns and was the 1993 WCC Coach of the Year and Pepperdine athletic department Coach of the Year. His teams were ranked as high as 16th in the nation and the 1993 team participated in the school's first-ever NCAA Golf Championship. Schuette recruited four of the five players on the Pepperdine team that won the 1997 NCAA championship.
USC Championships Under Kurt Schuette
Apr. 29, 2001 Pac-10 Championships (Stanford, CA)
Jan. 30, 2001 PING Arizona Intercollegiate (Tucson, Ariz.)
Oct. 10, 2000 Taylor Made Red River Classic (Dallas, TX)
Feb. 1, 2000 Univ. of Arizona 'Ping Intercollegiate (Tucson, AZ)
April 26, 1997 U.S. Intercollegiate (Palo Alto, CA)
April 8, 1997 Southwestern Intercollegiate (Westlake Village, CA)
March 4, 1997 Aldila Collegiate Classic (San Diego, CA)
Feb. 4, 1997 Ping Arizona Intercollegiate (Tucson, AZ)
Sept. 30, 1995 Fresno Lexus Golf Classic (Fresno, CA)
April 11, 1995 Western Intercollegiate (Santa Cruz, CA)
Jan. 30, 2001 PING Arizona Intercollegiate (Tucson, Ariz.) Alex Kuyumjian--68-67-71--206Oct. 10, 2000 Taylor Made Red River Classic (Dallas, TX) Hunter Mahan -- 72-65-67--204Oct. 3, 2000 Windon-Memorial Classic (Lake Forest, Ill) Hunter Mahan -- 72-68-73--213March 11, 1997 Oregon Duck Invitational (Eugene, OR) Chad Wright -- 73-71--144 (playoff)March 4, 1997 Aldila Collegiate Classic (San Diego, CA) Chad Wright -- 66-73-74--213 (playoff)Feb. 4, 1997 Ping Arizona Intercollegiate (Tucson, AZ) Roger Tambellini -- 73-66-66--205Oct. 29, 1996 Savane College All-America Golf Classic (El Paso, TX) Chad Wright -- 72-69-71--212 (playoff)Feb. 14, 1996 Mauna Kea Invitational (Kohala Coast, HI) Roger Tambellini -- 65-72-69--206Sept. 16, 1995 USA vs. Japan 'Topy Cup' (Tanagura, Japan) Brian Hull -- 67-74-71--212