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State of the Program - Men’s Golf

2019-2020 looks bright for the UVA men’s golfers

Virginia Media Relations

Over the last 10 years, the Virginia Men’s golf team has progressed into the upper tier of the ACC. While they haven’t had a really high finish in the NCAA Championships, they continue to field solid teams and 2018-19 was no different. While the season results may not have been what the Cavaliers wanted, they did put it together in the ACC tournament as they finished second, a feat they’ve accomplished only five times.

Overall, Bowen Sargent has done a fantastic job guiding this team over his 15-year tenure at the University. He’s overseen the Wahoos going to NCAA Regionals 13 times. Before his arrival, UVA had only qualified for Regionals ten times. And now may be the best stretch of all with the Hoos extending their consecutive regionals streak to 12 this season.

UVA Men’s Golf Five Year Results

Year Avg Tournament Finish ACC Finish Postseason Result
Year Avg Tournament Finish ACC Finish Postseason Result
2018-2019 7th 2nd 7th NCAA Regional
2017-2018 6th 4th 7th NCAA Regional
2016-2017 5th 6th 10th NCAA Championships
2015-2016 6th 8th 22nd NCAA Championships
2014-2015 5th 4th 18th NCAA Championships

2019 Recap

2019 Stars: Thomas Walsh, Andrew Orischak, David Morgan

Any conversation of the 2018-2019 Hoos has to start with Thomas Walsh. The senior didn’t disappoint coming off his 2018 ACC Championship leading the team in stroke average by a full shot, earning Medalist honors at the Inverness Intercollegiate during the fall season, and leading the Hoos in scoring in six of 11 tournaments. As a team, Virginia posted their worst average finish of the last five years, but salvaged the season with their second place finish at the ACC Championships.

Pacing the Hoos at ACC’s was David Morgan. The first year posted a 10-under 206, good enough for fourth place in the tournament. He was third in scoring average, and also posted three of the Hoos’ best nine rounds on the season, tying him with Walsh for most in that range. Coming in second in scoring average was Andrew Orischak. The junior was solid, posting scores of par or better in just under half of his total tournaments and leading the team in scoring in three of eleven tournament, second only to Walsh. While he didn’t have many flashy rounds, he was able to contribute a score more often than not, an accomplishment that isn’t lost on the team game of golf.

Finally of note on the 2019 season was the performance of Ashton Poole in the second round of the Stanford Regional. Poole fired a six-under par 64, the Hoos’ lowest stroke total of the year to help his team finish seventh in the regional capping his senior season in style.

2020 Outlook

Key Returners: Andrew Orischak, David Morgan, Jimmie Massie, Sam Jung

While the loss of Walsh will certainly be a detriment to the 2019-20 Cavaliers, they could be returning one of their better cores in recent memory. In addition to Orischak and Morgan, rising junior Jimmie Massie brings back two years of starters experience. Massie had the team’s fourth lowest stroke average and also tied for the team’s second lowest stroke total in a round with his five-under 65 at the Palmetto Intercollegiate back in March.

Also coming into the fold is transfer Sam Jung. Jung is Northern Virginia Junior prospect who spent last season with George Mason where he led the Patriots in stroke average as a freshman. While the ACC will be a step up on competition, golf is golf, and the kid was really good last season placing second at the tournament hosted by GMU and firing a six-under 66 in a tournament at Florida Atlantic University.

As with the women, the men’s golf team is eagerly awaiting the re-opening of Birdwood Golf Course in spring 2020. The first-class facility will hopefully be a step in the right direction for the team to finally get that first ACC Championship and continue to excel in the NCAA Championships.