Championship Notes Wichita State earns its 21st all-time MVC men’s golf title (more than any other school). The Shockers have 15 titles in the past 21 seasons, finishing no worse than second in any of those 21 years. Grier Jones of WSU earned MVC Golf Coach of the Year honors for a league-best 14th time. Brad Carpenter of Missouri State earned the league’s Elite 18 Award – he’s the first golfer from MSU to do so (3.934 in Finance) Ethan Brue of Bradley earned the MVC Newcomer of the Year honor – the first Bradley golfer to do so. Medalist Trent Wallace of Illinois State became the 12th in MVC history to earn conference medalist honors 2 times (the sophomore also won last year).
All-Conference Team Yannick Emmert, Wichita State Ethan Brue, Bradley Grant Bennett, Wichita State Tyler Gray, Evansville Adam Fisher, Missouri State Zach Burry, Illinois State Sam DeBartolo, UNI Peyton Wilhoit, Southern Illinois Drake Bushong, Bradley Trent Wallace, Illinois State
Golfer of the Year: Yannick Emmert, Wichita State Newcomer of the Year: Ethan Brue, Bradley Elite 18 Award: Brad Carpenter, Missouri State Coach of the Year: Grier Jones, Wichita State
MONDAY (APRIL 24) RECAP Wichita State holds a narrow lead at the Missouri Valley Conference Championship field through two rounds with Grant Bennett tied for first and three other Shockers in the top-10 individual leader board as they seek their 21st conference title and 15th in the past 19 seasons. Bennett, last season's MVC Player of the Year, carded a 1-over 73 and even-par 72 to finish day one with 145 overall. The senior from Prosper, Texas., leads the Shockers and helps prop up the individual leaderboard through the first two rounds of golf.
Illinois State sophomore Trent Wallace is tied with Bennett for first after he shot a round-best 2-under-par 70 (34-36) in the first round, followed by a 3-over-par 75 (38-37) in the second round. His performance also included five total birdies and an eagle on the fifth hole. The Redbirds are in second place, just one stroke behind leader Wichita State, and 10 strokes ahead of third-place UNI after shooting a 2-over-par 290 in the first round and an 11-over-par 299 in the second for a 589. Those three teams -- WSU, ILS and UNI are paired together Tuesday, beginning at 8:40 a.m. (other teams begin with tee times beginning at 8:00 a.m.)
Missouri State is in 4th place with a two-round 606, seven strokes behind UNI (599). Bradley is right behind in fifth at 610, followed by sixth-place Evansville at 615. Defending champion Southern Illinois finds itself tied for 7th place after 36 holes (with Drake) at 619. Host Loyola is at 624.
A pair of golfers are just one stroke behind the individual leaders, including Illinois State's Christian Crabill and Missouri State's Jack Knoesel -- both at 146. Yannick Emmert of Wichita State rounds out the top 5 on the individual leaderboard with a 147. Tournament play featured 6 eagles, including two by Illinois State's Crabill, while Missouri State's Knoesel leads the field with a tournament-best nine birdies. David Perkins of Illinois State has an MVC Championship-best 28 pars. The two most difficult holes proved to be No. 14 and No. 18, while the two holes where players scored the best -- No. 5 and No. 11.
COURSE INFORMATION A nationally ranked course since its opening in 1964. At that time, Course No. 4 was given the nickname "DUBSDREAD." The nickname "DUBSDREAD" is derived from the idea that a "dub" or poor golfer should beware and served as a warning of the challenges forthcoming. True to its name, this natural-style championship course places a high demand on shot-making ability ability by providing tight landing areas combined with heavily bunkered, large undulating greens.
In light of recent advances in golf club technology and agronomy, the "Open Doctor" Rees Jones was brought in to re-establish the original intent and strategy of DUBSDREAD'S design. The renovation plan incorporated square tees, repositioned bunkers and hazards, and all 18 greens were rebuilt and recontoured with Sub-Air drainage.
Over the years, DUBSDREAD has challenged professionals and amateurs alike while hosting numerous PGA Tour and USGA tournaments.