Vanderbilt Men's Golfers Hit the Links Again 2/7/03

After taking time off from competitive action for the better part of the past three months, the Vanderbilt men’s golf team begins its run to the SEC and NCAA Championship this weekend in Florida.

The Commodores kick off the spring season Saturday and Sunday at the 26th Annual Gator Invitational in Gainesville, Fla. The tournament will be played at The University of Florida Golf Course (Par 72, 6,701 yards).

Vanderbilt is coming off its most successful semester of golf in school history. VU posted three Top-5 finishes as a team and never finished lower than seventh in the five fall tournaments. The Commodores also had the scores to back up their finishes as they were below par as a team in three of the five events.

The highlight of the fall slate was the second annual Mason Rudolph Championships where Vanderbilt won its home tournament. The Commodores finished first with a school-record 29-under-par three-round score of 811. VU fired rounds of 271, 272 and 268. The previous best team round in school history was a 275 and the Dores bettered that number in all three rounds.

Another remarkable statistic about the tournament was the fact that the Commodores shot the low round in all three rounds, with a 275 being the next closest. As you would guess, the individual stats are just as noteworthy. Of the 12 rounds that counted for the Commodores, 11 were under par and in the 60s. Vanderbilt had scoring individuals finish in first, third, fourth and seventh places.

Senior Brandt Snedeker also got the monkey off his back, claiming his first collegiate tournament championship with a 12-under-par score of 198. However, success didn’t stop there for Snedeker because he would wind up winning the next two tournaments to claim medalist honors in three straight events. In addition to the Mason Rudolph Championships, the Nashville native took top honors at the Gary Koch Intercollegiate and the Tennessee Tournament of Champions.

Snedeker heads into the spring with a team-best 68.79 stroke average. He carded 10 rounds in the 60s, including a stretch of eight consecutive rounds. He also was able to record below-par rounds in all but one of his 14 rounds.

But Snedeker was not the only Commodore to have a strong start to this season and that consistency across the board is what made the fall so successful. The other four regular players for Vanderbilt finished the fall less than two strokes apart.

Sophomore Lance Goodson was second on the team with 72.93 stroke average, while playing in all 14 of the team’s rounds. Goodson’s best finish was a tie for seventh at the Mason Rudolph Championship and his best score was two-under-par, which he carded at both the Mason Rudolph Championship and the Tennessee Tournament of Champions.

Next in VU’s lineup was senior Craig Dunlap, played in all 14 rounds for Vanderbilt and posted a 73.00 stroke average. He finished third at the Mason Rudolph Championship with an eight-under-par score of 202.

Sophomore Mark Donnell also finished the fall with a 73.00 stroke average, but in just 11 rounds. Donnell missed the first trip of the season, but came back strong with a tie for fourth with a seven-under-par 203 at the Mason Rudolph Championship.

Sophomore Ben McClung rounds out Vanderbilt’s “starting five.” McClung recorded a 74.79 stroke average in 14 rounds. His best performance of the fall came at the Mason Rudolph Championship, where he finished tied for 21st with a three-over-par 213.

Junior Ken Lewis made the first trip of the year to the Kiawah Island Intercollegiate and also competed at the Mason Rudolph Championship. He finished his six rounds with a 76.00 stroke average. Senior Jason Dallas and sophomore Jack Skirkanich each participated in the Mason Rudolph Championship.

Teams Competing at Gator Invitational
• Alabama
• Augusta State
• College of Charleston
• Florida
• Florida State
• Georgia Southern
• Georgia State
• Kentucky
• North Florida
• Ohio State
• Purdue
• South Florida
• Vanderbilt



Vanderbilt Athletic Department
2601 Jess Neely Drive
Nashville, TN 37212
615-322-GOLD (4653)