27 Sep Men’s Golf Heads To Graeme McDowell Invitational
FORT MYERS, Fla. – The FGCU men’s golf team returns to action on Monday and Tuesday, Sept. 27-28, as the Eagles take part in the Graeme McDowell Invitational hosted by UAB at the RTJ at Silver Lakes in Gadsden, Alabama. The tournament will kick off at 8 AM on Monday morning with 36 holes being played on the day. It will conclude with a final 18 holes on Tuesday.
The Eagles are coming off a 12th-place showing at the prestigious Maridoe Collegiate Invitational two weeks ago. The field featured five programs in the preseason top-10 and eight in the top 25. Frankie Capan III (North Oaks, Minn./Northwest Christian HS/Alabama) led FGCU who tied for 34th (225).
The lineup will stay largely the same as before with Brady Madsen (Raymond, Minn./MacCray HS/Winona State) and Pierre Viallaneix (Apopka, Fla./Winter Park HS/Western Carolina) switching spots as the only change. Thomas Salanito (Palm Harbor, Fla./Clearwater Central Catholic) will make his first appearance of the year as he plays in the tournament as an individual.
The field for the Graeme McDowell will be led by host UAB which is No. 36 in the GolfStat.com rankings. The Eagles will be the second-highest ranked squad at No. 65, while Louisiana-Monroe checks in at No. 86 and Louisiana enters the tournament ranked No. 99 overall.
Capan enters the tournament with a 72.75 scoring average through eight tournaments at FGCU, while Austin Cherichella (Orlando, Fla./Lake Nona HS) is just behind at 73.33 strokes per round. Jon Hopkins (Bishop’s Stortford, England/Mississippi Gulf Coast CC) has an average score of 73.17, while Madsen averages 73.44 in nine tournaments. Salanito will make his fourth collegiate appearance with a 75.78 scoring average. Viallaneix shot 78 in his one FGCU tournament after transferring to Fort Myers from Western Carolina where he averaged 72.46 per round last spring.
Hopkins will lead off the Eagles with an 8:30 AM (7:30 AM CT) tee time on hole No. 1. Live scoring for each round will be available through www.GolfStat.com.
1. Frankie Capan III
2. Austin Cherichella
3. Brady Madsen
4. Pierre Viallaneix
5. Jon Hopkins
Individual – Thomas Salanito
Graeme Invitational Field:
#135 Charleston Southern
#136 Georgia State
#120 Jacksonville State
#124 South Alabama
#117 Texas State
#172 Western Kentucky
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HEAD COACH ANDREW DANNA:
Danna just finished his second year at the helm of the FGCU men’s golf program leading the Eagles to a second place finish at the ASUN Championship. One of the best turnarounds in NCAA history saw the Green and Blue, led by Van Holmgren who became the first player to earn PING All-Region honors, jump from No. 257 in the final 2019-20 GolfStat.com rankings to a program-best 65 to close out 2020-21. Before taking over in Fort Myers, he served the 2018-19 season as the assistant at LSU. Prior to that he was the ultra-successful head coach for six years at Lynn University where he led them to the 2018 NCAA Division II national championship and was, subsequently, chosen the David Williams National Coach of the Year. He also led the Fighting Knights to three national runner-up placements, with a third and eighth place finish in his other two seasons.
FGCU Athletics sponsors events in November and April to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and the Harry Chapin Food Bank (www.harrychapinfoodbank.org), FGCU Athletics’ charities of choice. For more information, including how to make a contribution, please visit www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry and utilize the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.
FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 85 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 13+ seasons at the Division I level. Additionally, in just nine seasons of D-I postseason eligibility, the Eagles have had a combined 42 teams or individuals compete in NCAA championships. Eight FGCU programs have earned a top-25 national ranking in their respective sport – including women’s basketball (No. 21, 2020-21), beach volleyball (No. 20, 2021) and both men’s soccer (2018, 2019) and women’s soccer (2018) as three of the most recent. In 2016-17, the Green and Blue posted a department-best sixth-place finish in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors’ Cup and top-100 showing nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had an ASUN and state of Florida best seven teams earn the NCAA’s Public Recognition Award for their Academic Progress Rate in their sport. FGCU also collectively earned a record 3.50 GPA in the classroom in the fall 2020 semester and has outperformed the general University undergraduate population for 24 consecutive semesters. The 2019 Fall, 2020 Spring, 2020 Fall, and 2021 Spring semesters each saw another milestone reached as all 15 programs achieved a 3.0-or-higher team GPA in each. The Eagles also served an all-time high 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two runners-up for the inaugural NACDA Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.
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