The 2018 NCAC Men’s Golf Championships were contested April, 27-29, at Westbrook Country Club in Mansfield, Ohio, with Ohio Wesleyan University serving as the host institution. The event consisted of 54-total holes, with 18 holes being played, respectively, on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Westbrook Country Club
Hosted by Ohio Wesleyan University
Friday - Sunday
Championship Apparel (code: ncacgolf)
|2018 NCAC Golf Champions|
Wittenberg won its ninth-straight NCAC men’s golf title by a razor thin margin as the Tigers topped Ohio Wesleyan in the team standings by just one stroke. Wittenberg finished the three-day event with a 54-hole score of 898 (298-297-303), while the Bishops posted a three-day score of 899 (303-298-298). As NCAC champions, the Tigers have earned the league’s automatic bid into the 2018 NCAA Division III Men’s Golf Championships, which will be contested at the Grandover Resort G.C. in Greensboro, North Carolina, May 15-18.
Wittenberg and Ohio Wesleyan were followed in the final men’s team standings by Kenyon in third with a 907 (302-308-297), Allegheny in fourth with 912 (303-300-309), DePauw in fifth with 937 (318-311-308), Wooster in sixth with 941 (307-312-322), Denison in seventh with 943 (305-312-326), Wabash in eighth with 974 (325-314-335) and Hiram in ninth with a 1,151 (384-383-383).
Allegheny freshman Louis Olsakovsky (Upper St. Clair, PA/Upper St. Clair) earned the 2018 NCAC Men’s Golf Bob Nye Award as the champion medalist after he fired a five-under par 54-hole score of 211 (71-67-73). Olsakovsky was also tabbed as the 2018 NCAC Men’s Golf Newcomer of the Year as the top finisher in the individual standings in their first year of collegiate competition. Kenyon senior Ryan Muthiora (Zion Crossroads, VA/Tandem Friends School) earned the 2018 NCAC Men’s Golf Dick Gordin award as the league’s overall Player of the Year by a vote of the league coaches. Muthiora is the first player in program history to win the NCAC’s prestigious Dick Gordin Award. Finally, Kenyon head coach Grant Wallace was named the 2018 NCAC Men’s Golf Coach of the Year for the second time in his career by a vote of his conference peers. Wallace also won the NCAC’s top coaching honor in 2015.
The DePauw Tigers won their league-leading fourth NCAC women’s golf title with a 54-hole score of 974 (320-323-331), while the Wittenberg Tigers, winners of the last three league championships, finished second overall with a 982 (321-324-337). As NCAC champions, the Indiana Tigers have earned the league’s automatic bid into the 2018 NCAA Division III Women’s Golf Championships, which will be contested the Mission Hills Resort G.C. in Howey-in-the-Hills, Florida, May 8-11.
DePauw and Wittenberg were followed in the team standings by Denison in third with 1,052 strokes (355-348-349), Wooster in fourth with 1,076 (355-365-356), Ohio Wesleyan in fifth with 1,126 (371-372-383) and Allegheny in sixth with 1,232 strokes (409-417-406).
Wittenberg senior Jane Hopkinson-Wood (Pottstown, PA/The Hill School) was the women’s overall medalist over the course of the championship tournament with a two-over par 54-hole score of 224 (72-72-80). Hopkinson-Wood, who was also the champion medalist in 2016, was also named the 2018 NCAC Women’s Golfer of the Year by vote of the league coaches for the fourth year in a row. DePauw freshman Cristal Chan (Hung Hom Kowloon, Hong Kong/St. Mary’s Canossian College) earned the 2018 NCAC Women’s Golf Newcomer of the Year honor as the top finisher in the individual standings in their first year of collegiate competition after she finished the three-day event with a score of 248 (81-83-84), which landed her on the All-NCAC first team as part of a three-way tie for fifth place. Finally, the league coaches also tabbed DePauw head coach Vince Lazar as the 2018 NCAC Women’s Golf Coach of the Year for the third time in his career and the first time since winning back-to-back honors in 2012 and ‘13.
2018 NCAC Golf
Following pre-championship balloting by eight of the nine league coaches, Wittenberg has been tabbed as the favorites to win its ninth-straight NCAC men’s golf championship. The Tigers, who are under the direction of first-year head coach Michael Leotta, collected seven of the possible first-place votes cast by league coaches to top the poll with 71 total points. Kenyon earned the final first-place vote and finished second in the poll with 65 points, followed by Ohio Wesleyan (56), DePauw (40), Allegheny (38), Wooster (36), Denison (29), Wabash (17) and Hiram (8).
The Wittenberg Tigers, who enter the championship ranked 17th in the GolfStat Top-25, will once again bring a stacked lineup to the event this spring as the team has combined to win four total tournaments between the fall and spring seasons. The Tigers earned a pair of their wins in the fall season at the Allegheny Fall Invitational in early September and at the 36-hole championship preview event at Westbrook C.C. in mid October. Wittenberg than earned the top prize in late March at the Wynlakes Intercollegiate in Montgomery, Alabama, before closing out the regular season with a win last weekend at OWU’s Strimer Memorial Invitational. Two of the Tigers’ top golfers hail from the junior class, including Isaac Hartley (Bellevue, OH/Bellevue) and Colin Laszlo (Waipahu, HI/Punahou), while 2017 NCAC Newcomer of the Year, sophomore Cameron Willis (Eaton, OH/Eaton), has also been a mainstay in the lineup this year. Hartley is the only Tiger with an individual win this season after picking up medalist honors last weekend at OWU’s Strimer Memorial Invitational with a 36-hole score of 142 (71-71). Kenyon also enters the championship with a top-25 ranking as the Lords are 19th overall in the GolfStat Top-25. KC golfers have combined for 13 total top-five finishes in events this season, led by senior Ryan Muthiora (Zion Crossroads, VA/Tandem Friends) earning a pair of top finishes this season at the Transylvania Invitational in early September and again at The Hershey Cup in early April. As a team, the Lords finished in the top-five at eight different events this year, highlighted by posting team wins at DePauw’s Dan Quayle Collegiate Classic and again at the Hershey Cup. Ohio Wesleyan also brings a strong resume to Mansfield this weekend as the Bishops have five top-five finishes this season, led by winning its own Battle at the Brook event in early September. Individually, three total golfers return to the field this spring after earning first-team All-NCAC honors last year, led by Willis who tied for the top spot in the individual standings in 2017 with a 218, but missed out on the medalist award after falling to teammate Sam Stillwell on the second playoff hole. Also landing in the top-five last spring was Ohio Wesleyan junior Adam Armstrong (Centerville, OH/Centerville) in a tie for third with a 220 and Allegheny senior Bobby Hapanowicz (Presto, PA/Sewickley Acad.) in a tie for fifth with 224 strokes.
Wittenberg, winners of the last three NCAC women’s golf championships, narrowly edged DePauw as the favorites in this year’s pre-championship poll following balloting by the league coaches. The Ohio Tigers earned three of the available first-place votes cast by the coaches for 33 total points, while the Indiana Tigers collected the final three first-place votes and finished second overall in the poll with 32 points. Denison was third overall with 25 points, followed by Wooster in fourth (17), Ohio Wesleyan in fifth (10) and Allegheny in sixth (9).
The Wittenberg Tigers, who are under the leadership of first-year head coach Michael Leotta, enter the 2018 NCAC Golf Championships ranked 16th in the nation in the most recent GolfStat Top-25, while the DePauw Tigers are ninth in the country in the same rankings. Wittenberg has won two team events this season, winning its own Pat Clouse Invitational in early October, before capturing the team title earlier this spring at OWU’s Laura Bump Invitational. DePauw has claimed three tournament titles during the fall portion of the season, highlighted by winning a 36-hole championship preview event at Westbrook C.C. in mid October. Wittenberg senior Jane Hopkinson-Wood (Pottstown, PA/The Hill School) has once again led the charge for her squad this season with five total individual titles, winning medalist honors at Denison’s Lynn Schweizer Invitational, DePauw’s Dan Quayle Collegiate Classic, Wittenberg’s own Pat Clouse Invitational, the NCAC Fall Preview event at Westbrook C.C. and finally earning the top prize at OWU’s Laura Bump Invitational this spring. Hopkinson-Wood, who won the NCAC’s individual championship in 2016, is also one of the top Div. III players in the country this season as she ranks third overall in the GolfStat individual rankings with an adjusted scoring average of 73.49. Hopkinson-Wood is one of four players returning to the championship field this year that received first-team All-NCAC honors last year with a top-five finish in the individual standings. Hopkinson-Wood finished second overall in 2017 with a 229, followed by DePauw junior Larisa Luloff (Cary, IL/Cary-Grove) in third (236), while the duo of DePauw junior Rachele Miller (Bettendorf, IA/Pleasant Valley) and Wittenberg senior Brianna Yee (Las Vegas, NV/Faith Lutheran) finished as part of a three-way tie for fifth with 244 strokes each. In addition, Denison sophomore Emmy Timberlake (Charlottesville, VA/Charlottesville) returns to the field this spring after earning the 2017 NCAC Newcomer of the Year award as the top individual finisher at the championships in their first year of collegiate competition in eighth-place with 250 total strokes.