ACWORTH, Ga. – The Point University men's golf team totaled 884 strokes (20 over par) for 54 holes and placed first among 11 Appalachian Athletics Conference schools at the NAIA-AAC Direct Qualifier, hosted by Reinhardt University at the Governor's Towne Club in Acworth, Ga., April 24-25. Point scored 289 strokes in round one, 300 in round two and 295 in round three. The top five teams in the Direct Qualifier were separated by just seven strokes.
The All-AAC Awards, including Player of the Year, Coach of the Year and the All-Conference first and second teams will be announced Wednesday morning, April 26, after 10 a.m.
As team champion, Point automatically qualifies for the 68th Annual NAIA National Men's Golf Championships, May 16-19, which will hosted by St. Ambrose University at TPC Deere Run in Moline, Illinois. Point, which ranks number 16 in the Bushnell Golfweek NAIA Coaches' Poll for April 21, won its first AAC Tournament championship and qualified for its first NAIA National Championship appearance.
St. Andrews finished second with 885, one stroke behind Point. St. Andrews and Point both totaled 295 strokes in round three, allowing Point to maintain its slim margin at the end. Reinhardt finished third with 886, two behind the leader, and Truett-McConnell University (Ga.) scored 890. Tennessee Wesleyan University scored 891.
Joe Hurn from St. Andrews put together rounds of 72, 71 and 70 for a three-under par, 54-hole total of 213, one stroke better than Ben Dulin from Reinhardt University, who fired rounds of 71, 73 and 70 for a total of 214 (two-under par). As the tournament medalist, Hurn will represent the AAC and his school at the NAIA Nationals in Moline. Hurn and Dulin headed up the All-Tournament team.
The All-Tournament team also includes Point's Connor Brown (SR/Bogart, GA), who tied for third place with Evan Ball and Cody Housley from Tennessee Wesleyan, with all three totaling 217 strokes (one over par).
Point finished a rainy Monday in first place with score of 289, nine strokes ahead of second-place Reinhardt University which totaled 298 in round one. The top five Skyhawks were listed among the top 12 placeholders -- Joao Magalhaes (SO/Porto, Portugal) was tied for 1st (71; -1) with Dulin from Reinhardt, and Francisco de Oliveira (JR/Algarve, Portugal) and Connor Brown was tied for 3rd (72; even par). Maddux Lytle (JR/Newnan, GA) was tied for 10th with a 74 (+2) and teammate Lance Daniel (SR/Manchester, GA) was tied for 12th with a 75 (+3).
However, by the end of the second 18-hole round, Point had shot a 300 and was hanging onto a one-stroke lead over St. Andrews University, which had soared from a fifth-place tie into second place by shooting a second-round total of 282 (6 under par). Point led St. Andrews by 19 strokes after day one by 19 strokes, but St. Andrews made up 18 strokes on the Skyhawks in round two.
Point maintained its one-stroke lead with a combined 295 for its four players, which gave the Skyhawks a 54-hole total of 884. St. Andrews also shot a 295 in round three for a total of 885. Four-player totals of 288 (even par) in Monday's first round and 318 in the second round on Tuesday. Point ranks number 18 in the NAIA Coaches' Top 25 and number 14 in the Bushnell Golfweek NAIA Coaches Poll.
Brown led Point with his 54-hole total of 217 (one over par), including rounds of 72, 74 and 71, and Francisco de Oliveira, a two-time AAC Player of the Week and a National Player of the Week in mid-March, finished eighth with a total of 222 (six over par), including rounds of 72, 76 and 76. Lytle tied for 13th among the 53 golfers with a 54-hole total of 225 (nine-over par), shooting rounds of 74, 76 and 75.
Joao Magalhaes tied for 21st place with a 54-hole total of 228 (12-over par), including rounds of 71, 74 and 83. Lance Daniel put together rounds of 75, 82 and 75 for a total of 232 (16-over par).