New Mexico State repeats as PGA Jones Cup champs

By John Dever
Published on
New Mexico State repeats as PGA Jones Cup champs

Port St. Lucie, Florida — Some say that once is a mistake, and twice could be a pattern.

For New Mexico State University’s PGA Golf Management program, which today secured its second Jones Cup in as many years on the Wanamaker Course at PGA Golf Club, back-to-back victories suggest the strong likelihood of a winning program pedigree.

With a two-day total of 594, the Aggies became the first program to win consecutive Jones Cups since Coastal Carolina in 2004 and ’05.

The 36-hole event concluded today, with each of the 19 universities that sponsor the PGA Golf Management program showcasing the talents of five players in the annual team event.

PGA JONES CUP: Full Coverage | Photos

Penning a remarkably similar script to last year, New Mexico State erased a three-shot deficit after the first day to edge Florida Gulf Coast University (597). North Carolina State (600) and Eastern Kentucky pushed hard on Wednesday, but placed third and fourth, respectively.

Last year, the Aggies trailed by two shots before ultimately claiming their third Jones Cup in program history. NMSU’s initial victory in the event came in 2006.

“We talked to our kids and reminded them that they can never take the 2015 Jones Cup away from us,” said Josh Salmon, the Aggies’ PGA Golf Management Program Specialist, who was on hand for last year’s victory, which channeled the incredible emotions associated with the unexpected passing of 18 year-old Gage Gavin, the son of New Mexico State’s Golf Management Director, Pat Gavin. “Yes, last year was special because of what Pat’s family was going through, and those events are always in our minds. That said, we also have 1,300-plus alumni, family and friends of the program that we represent and this victory is for them, too.”

Three Aggies — Redge Camacho, Nathan LeBlanc, and Cole Lorenz — returned from last year and hoisted the Jones Cup for the second time in 12 months, but it was the final-round effort of freshman Tristin Goodwin that put NMSU’s rally to repeat over the top.

Playing the Wanamaker Course for the first time, Goodwin posted a pedestrian 84 on Tuesday, but his score did not register, as per event rules, each team’s lowest score is dropped.

The freshman from Farmington, New Mexico did not buckle in disappointment. After Josh Elder chipped in with a 76 on Tuesday, Goodwin’s 73 on Wednesday proved vital for the Aggies.

“Tristin birdied the 18th today for a 73,” said Salmon. “That’s a tough hole, but his performance provided such a boost. He could have hung his head, but he dug deep and came through for his team and this program. That impressed me.”

Tyler Collet from Eastern Kentucky won medalist honors with rounds of 73 and 70. By a single stroke, he edged out Camacho (73-71) and Matthew Chen (74-70) from FGCU.

“Looking at this field, and all of the terrific players, I could never imagine myself on top,” said Collet. “I putted great today and made six birdies. This has been a special week. It’s all very humbling.”

The PGA Jones Cup is named for the first PGA Golf Management University Program Director at Mississippi State, Dr. S. Roland Jones, who held the position from 1985 until his passing in 1997. The event provides a platform where participants can display professionalism, integrity, character and camaraderie; all characteristics Dr. Jones instilled in PGA Golf Management students.

All participating universities in the PGA Jones Cup are schools accredited by the PGA of America to offer the PGA Golf Management University Program for aspiring PGA Professionals. There are currently over 2,000 students enrolled in the program nationwide.

Hosted by: PGA Golf Club – Wanamaker Course

1. New Mexico State University: 298-296—594
Redge Camacho 73-71--144; Nathan LeBlanc 74-76--150; Cole Lorenz 75-76--151; Josh Elder 76-78--154; Tristin Goodwin 84-73--157

2. Florida Gulf Coast University: 295-302—597
Alex Reynolds 70-77--147; Alex Holt 74-75--149; Matthew Chen 74-76--150; Tanner Nipper 77-76--153; Mei Khuan Yong 79-75--154

3. North Carolina State University: 313-287—600
Nat Chen 77-67--144; Michael Pittelli 76-71--147; Ben Justus 79-72--151; Kevin Campbell 81-78--159; Ryan Miller 87-77--164

4. Eastern Kentucky University: 303-300—603
Tyler Collet73-70--143; Nathan Bratcher74-75--149; Phillip Webb76-79--155; Madison Erskine80-77--157; Robert Wolfers82-78--160

5. Campbell University: 302-305—607
Corey Layton72-73--145; Peter Clarke73-76--149; Johannes Fonts Zitzer80-74--154; Luke Polland78-82--160; Matthew McCord79-84--163

6. Penn State University: 318-292—610
David Ross 76-72--148; Christopher North 76-73--149; Gabriel Rivera 81-75--156; Brandon Beatty 88-72--160; Michael Esworthy 85-85--170

7. Sam Houston State University: 315-300—615
Shane Hall 74-75--149; Dylan Rowe 76-74--150; Spencer Dillard 83-74--157; Marko Lloyd 82-77--159; Matthew Boundy 89-85--174

8. Methodist University: 311-306—617
Steven Traska 77-74--151; Drew Billard 74-80--154; Kerry Connors 80-76--156; AJ Clark 81-76--157; Jack Ramsett 80-81--161

T9. Clemson University: 310-308—618
Chris Sells 74-74--148; Eric Flood 76-74--150; Robbie Failes 81-79--160; Wes Foskey 79-81--160; Andrew Reeves 89-84--173

T9. UNLV: 312-306—618
Matthew Rion 70-79--149; Jake Dolby 78-73--151; Phil Soo Kim 82-78--160; Sawyer Spackman 84-76--160; Tanner Manser 82-79--161

11. Coastal Carolina: 318-302—620
Jacob Vaiknoras 80-74--154; Bryan Hunt 80-75--155; Zach Taylor 81-75--156; John Fanning 77-80--157; Andrew Roy 83-78--161

T12. Ferris State University: 315*-308—623 (* - includes four-stroke team penalty)
James Delnick 75-77--152; David Rudary 76-76--152; Dominic Scopone 82-75--157; Benjamin Spector 78-83--161; Christian Hayden 86-80--166

T12. Mississippi State: 312-311—623
Bobby Flanagan 76-77--153; Luke Reilly 77-78--155; Keifer Clary 79-80--159; Zach Tate 87-76--163; Hayden Hauss 80-84--164

14. Florida State University: 321-304—625
Spencer Smith 76-76--152; Zachary Brown 82-75--157; Dan Huffingham 81-76--157; Ross Gutlohn 82-77--159; Turner Meek 84-87--171

15. University of Maryland Eastern Shore: 318-316—634
Norman Blanco 74-79--153; Bryce Young 78-78--156; Justin Diggs 84-77--161; Bobby Donson 84-82--166; Tiana Jones 82-88--170

16. University of Nebraska: 318-318--636
Brad Bailey 73-73--146; Kramer Samuelson 75-72--147; Aaron Hart 80-76--156; Jacob Frodyma 90-97--187; Zach Gleysteen 103-97--200

17. University of Colorado - Colorado Springs: 323-315—638
Chris Ingram 81-73--154; Matt Weiss 80-78--158; Jayden Bruun 81-78--159; Patrick Gregoire 82-86--168; Bradley Myers 81-91--172

18. University of Central Oklahoma: 330-324—654
Holden Crago 81-73--154; Austin Krewson 79-82--161; Ross Smith 86-79--165; Jake Loveland 85-90--175; Garrett Marler 85-90--175

19. University of Idaho: 356-351—707
Drew Carlson 87-82--169; Tanner Crisofulli 96-80--176; David Currie 87-93--180; Brennen Eilek 93-96--189; Emilio Rodriguez 89-105--194