Men’s Golf plays first round of WCCs today
The Santa Clara
April 25, 2019
No. 83 ranked Men’s Golf stands just one win from clinching a spot in the NCAA Championships next month—a feat much easier said than done.
Beginning today, eight teams, including No. 14 Pepperdine, No. 30 Brigham Young and No. 55 Saint Mary’s. will compete in the West Coast Conference (WCC) Tournament held at The Reserve at Spanos Park in Stockton. The tournament’s winner will earn an automatic bid to the NCAAs.
The Broncos will tee off at 9:20 a.m. paired with a formidable Pepperdine team. The Waves have been dominant, winning or placing second in 25 of their last 32 tournaments and will be searching for their 20th conference title.
Santa Clara will be led by low scorer and junior Matt McCarty, who is averaging a team best 71.18 strokes per round. And the team may have one advantage: the course.
Last year, the Broncos collected a win while competing in the Visit Stockton Pacific Invitational held at Spanos Park. Senior David Ackerman, sophomore Jack Avritt and McCarty were all apart of last year’s victory at the venue and will get the chance to use their knowledge of the course in this weekend’s tournament.
The WCCs will run today through Saturday, with each team playing 18 holes per day. Although not the most intimidating team in the field, the Broncos have beaten everyone but Pepperdine in tournaments throughout the season. In other words, it’s the Waves’ turn.
SANTA CLARA, Calif.—It took 10 innings for Santa Clara to beat Cal Poly the last time the teams saw each other on April 2. On Tuesday, the Broncos wanted to leave nothing to chance.
After holding the Mustangs scoreless in the top of the first inning, the Broncos brought home a runner following junior catcher Jake MacNichols’ sacrifice fly. In the third and with a runner on first, MacNichols collected more RBIs, blasting a two-run homerun to left field— his 11th of the year—to put the Broncos ahead 3-0.
On the mound for Santa Clara was redshirt sophomore Brandon Buckley—his first start in more than two years. Although the starter, Buckley’s duties were limited to just the first inning before he was replaced by fellow redshirt sophomore, Ethan Heinrech, in the second. Head coach Rusty Filter appeared to use the nonconference game as a day to get as many pitchers live action as possible. When it was all said and done, a total of eight pitchers toed the rubber for Santa Clara. The Mustangs were unable to settle in against any one of them and the Broncos’ staff combined to throw a four-hit shut-out.
Santa Clara scored once in the fourth and again in the eighth inning to cap off a 5-0 victory. Redshirt sophomore Andre Nnebe—out most of last season with injuries and batting in the lead-off spot for the first time this year—collected two hits and scored twice courtesy of MacNichols.
This weekend, the Broncos will travel to Portland for a road series beginning Friday at 6 p.m.
CLAREMONT, Calif.—Winning three of their last four matches, Men’s Tennis hopes to carry their momentum into today’s opening round of the West Coast Conference, where they will take on a solid Brigham Young team at 1:00 p.m.
Yesterday, three Broncos were recognized with allconference honors. Senior Andrew Gu earned a spot on the All-WCC Singles First Team for the second year in a row after winning 11 of his 17 singles matches on either courts one or two this season. Senior Robert Seby and junior Jesus Tapiador Barajas were both named All-WCC Honorable Mentions.
Santa Clara last faced BYU in early February. The Cougars won that match handily, beating the Broncos 4-0 but head into today’s contest on a two-game losing streak. Whoever wins will move on to play Gonzaga tomorrow at 1 p.m.
Contact John Brussa at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (408) 554-4852.