Men's Golf Predicted Fourth in MVC Pre-Championship Poll
April 24, 2014
ST. LOUIS - Missouri State has been picked to finish fourth in the 2014 MVC Men's Golf Championship, according to a pre-championship coaches' poll announced on Thursday (April 24). The Bears won the MVC women's golf title in 1993 and consecutive Mid-Continent Championships in 1987 and 1988.
The league's coaches picked Wichita State (79 total points) as the favorite to win the three-day tournament. The Shockers have been dominant for over a decade in the Valley, winning the league championship 12 of the last 15 seasons, including six-straight.
Illinois State (74) was picked just behind Wichita State, and was the only other school besides WSU to receive first-place votes. Evansville (59) was predicted to place third, with five more points than the Bears (54).
The remaining schools in order of points are Bradley (41), Loyola (36), Northern Iowa (33), Drake (16), and Southern Illinois (13).
TPC Deere Run is the host site of the yearly PGA John Deere Classic. This course has been ranked one of America's 100 greatest public golf courses and in the top 5 courses in the state of Illinois. TPC Deere Run was designed Illinois State alum D.A. Weibring who transitioned into course design following at 30 year P.G.A. Tour career. The 2014 MVC Championship will mark the sixth time the league has conducted its culminating event at TPC Deere Run. The league played its championship event there five-straight years from 2001-05. In the MVC events previously staged there, Wichita State won three times, while Illinois State won the other two.
"We are looking forward to this opportunity," said head coach Neal Stafford. "TPC Deere Run is a great golf course and will provide a good test for the field. I feel like our schedule has prepared us well for what we will see this week."
The five Missouri State golfers to compete for the Bears this year will be Joey Johnson, the Newcomer of the Year and All-MVC selection from a year ago, along with Mitch Mather, Nick Langley, Eric Straub, and Mark Karlsen.
The tournament will begin on Monday morning with two rounds and will conclude with the final round on Tuesday. The All-Conference team and specialty awards will be announced at the conclusion of the third-round.