Clemson wins back-to-back NCCGA national championships
BOSTON — The National Collegiate Club Golf Association (NCCGA) hosted its National Championship and National Invitational, Nov. 15-17, in Thackerville, Oklahoma. The Championship was held at WinStar Golf Club’s Scissortail and Redbud courses at the WinStar World Casino and Resort, with the Invitational just down the road at famed Dornick Hills Country Club (a former PGA Tour stop). The NCCGA is the collegiate tour within Nextgengolf, a subsidiary of the PGA of America.
With a record two-day total of 733, Clemson University won the team National Championship title for the second consecutive year. The Tigers edged out Michigan State University (736), and both the University of Georgia and University of Virginia, who tied for third (739). This is Clemson’s third NCCGA Team National Championship.
“It feels great to win back-to-back titles,” said Clemson University Team President Spencer Roberts. “Although Clemson is known for our football team, we will cherish the moment to bring home another title to campus. Watch out for the Tigers Club Golf Team! We are lucky to have such a talented team and a great group of guys.”
At 3-under par 141 for the Championship, Jacob Kuchta of the University of Virginia was the individual medalist. Kuchta won in a one-hole playoff over Michigan State’s Dennis Volostnykh. Kuchta earned the coveted Red Jacket and an individual exemption into the Spring National Championship.
NCCGA National Championship medalists often use their NCCGA Championship performance to walk-on to collegiate varsity golf teams.
The event brought together 351 of the best non-varsity college golfers in the country from 56 schools competing on a national stage, making it the largest college golf tournament in the country. Coming into the Championship, Grand Canyon University (6th) and the University of Florida (Tied for 3rd), were the favorites. Meanwhile, Payte Owen of the University of Oklahoma was the hometown favorite to win the individual title, but fell two shots short of bringing home the championship in his home state.
At the nearby National Invitational, the University of Texas won the team title with a two-day total of 772. Stanford University finished in second place, seven shots off the pace (779), while the University of Cincinnati was third (780). With the victory, Texas earned an automatic bid into the 2020 Spring NCCGA National Championship.
“Our team played really well,” said Texas Team President Billy Teichman. “We are very thankful to be part of the NCCGA and look forward to the spring Nationals. It was fun playing in our backyard in Oklahoma.”
Stanford's Jack Barber was the individual medalist at the Invitational, with a two-day score of 3-over-par 143 (69-74). Barber edged out both Texas' Austin Chung and High Point University’s Hayes Esposito by a stroke.
In conjunction with the tournament, the NCCGA hosted the 3rd annual Careers in Golf networking event on Friday, Nov. 15, at the WinStar World Casino Resort and Golf Club driving range and golf academy. The PGA of America, Billy Casper Golf, Golf Channel, Topgolf, the USGA and American Junior Golf Association were among the organizations in attendance.