Men's golf ends with no postseason, UNK shuts program down


The Nebraska-Kearney men's golf program came to an end when it was not selected for the 2018 NCAA Central/Midwest Super Regional on Friday afternoon.

The Lopers were hoping a late season push would get the team, or top player Jay Cottam (Hebron), into the field. However, UNK and Cottam didn't get called. Kearney made NCAA regional play 10 times in its history, the last coming in 2013-14. This was one of several recent seasons where UNK was just short of making the cut.

In Division II, 10 teams from eight regions qualify with an additional four individuals not from one of the qualifying teams making the trip as well. Overall, the field consists of 80 teams and 32 individuals nationally. This year, the Central/Midwest Regional is May 7-9 in Findlay, Ohio.

This past season, UNK finished sixth out of 11 teams (32.0 points) in the race for the MIAA Championship. The Lopers were third in the last of four designated MIAA events, shooting a 54-hole total of 883. That tied for fifth best in school history.

Other team highlights included a sixth place finish at Broncho Stampede (899), a win at Upper Iowa Invite (36-hole total of 577) and a win at the Nebraska Intercollegiate (18-hole total of 299).

Individually, Cottam repeated as an All-MIAA player and had the second lowest stroke average (73.39) in a single season. His career average of 74.92, over 65 rounds, trails only Greg Davis (74.41/'04) and Michael Colgate (74.74/'14).

Next, English senior Bradley Hill (75.30) and Kearney sophomore Cody Troudt (75.39) also had two of the 16 lowest single season strokes averages in school history. Finally, Hill ranks sixth (75.25) and Troudt ninth (76.10) on the UNK career stroke average list.

2018 Central Region Team and Individual Qualifiers

Arkansas Tech

Central Oklahoma

Central Missouri

Lindenwood [Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association automatic]

Southeastern Oklahoma State

Harding, Ark.

Henderson State, Ark. [Great American Conference automatic]

Missouri Western State

Southwestern Oklahoma State

Minnesota State-Mankato [Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference automatic]

Noah Rasinski, Concordia-St. Paul

Rhett Bechtel, Southern Nazarene, Okla.

Ian Mackenzie-Olson, Bemidji State, Minn.

Michael Schmitz, Winona State, Minn.

Courtesy UNK Sports Information

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