Posted: Jan 18, 2019
The Oglethorpe men's golf program looks forward to the spring season to bounce back from a shaky fall. "We haven't been out of the top 25 in about 15 years," commented Oglethorpe Director of Golf Jim Owen. "This fall we sandwiched an early September win in Tennessee with an excellent final two rounds of 292-289 at Sandestin. However, in between, we had three events in a row where we finished out of the top 10. We have a lot of ground to make up."
The Petrels will open the spring schedule with their annual trip to Callaway Gardens March 4-5. "We won a rain-shortened Callaway last year, our third win ever there," added Owen. "We need a good start to the spring in Pine Mountain."
Oglethorpe hosts the second event of the fall, which will be the 20th anniversary of the 30-team, 54-hole Jekyll Island Collegiate Invitational March 14-17. Next up, the Stormy Petrels travel to Jacksonville, North Carolina, April 4-7 for the 48th edition of the Camp Lejeune Intercollegiate Golf Championship. This will mark the 23rd consecutive appearance for Oglethorpe on Marine Base Camp Lejeune. The Stormy Petrels have won six team championships in their previous 22 trips there. Last year, All-American Jake Arnett became the fifth Stormy Petrel golfer to win the individual medal at the event.
The Petrels will close the regular season across town at the Emory Spring Invitational at Smoke Rise Country Club in Stone Mountain, Georgia, April 20-21.
"Those four events in March and April will allow us to work toward regaining our footing toward winning our 13th conference championship and earning the SAA's automatic qualifying spot at the end of April," Owen commented.
The SAA Championship will return to Greystone Golf Club in Dickson, Tennessee, April 25-28. The championship and the automatic bid to the NCAA tournament will be decided over 54 holes and the winner will advance to Keene Trace Golf Club in Lexington, Kentucky, for the 2019 NCAA Division III Men's Golf Championship.
The Petrels were led last fall by senior All-American Jake Arnett. In his 13 rounds, Arnett posted a 72.46 scoring average and is ranked 14th in the South region and 37th nationally.
"Jake won two of our five tournaments this fall and finished 18th, 24th and 28th in the other three starts," recounted Owen. "He has won five tournaments in his three-and-a-half-year career, tying him for second in school history behind Anthony Maccaglia's 11 career wins and tying Trent Erb's five career wins." Arnett won the SAA Fall Preview at Greystone Golf Club this fall and, a month later, took the Oglethorpe-Royal Lakes Fall Invitational.
Sophomore Anthony DeRosa finished the fall season with a 75.08 scoring average and is currently ranked No. 140 in the nation. Ten of DeRosa's 13 rounds counted in the team score this fall. DeRosa placed in the top 25 three times in his five starts for the fall season, and posted a 3-under 69 for the low round of his fall season.
A pair of freshmen closed the fall season with strong finishes. Isley McClure edged his regional rank up to No. 44 and his national rank to No. 131 with three top 25 finishes this fall. He finished with a 74.11 scoring average and a low round of 71 at the Raven Golf Club as part of the Golfweek Division III Fall Invitational. Freshman Justin Rickerson of earned all-tournament honors in the Chick-fil-A Collegiate Invitational in Rome, Georgia. He posted a 76.64 fall scoring average and his low round of the fall season was a 69.
The Stormy Petrels will look to start a new NCAA Division III Championship appearance streak this spring, and will get underway in mid-February, when practice resumes.