ATHENS, Ga. – Big third rounds from Jon Hopkins and Brady Madsen along with another consistent effort from Austin Cherichella helped move the FGCU men’s golf team up two spots to finish second at the 2022 ASUN Championship hosted at the University of Georgia Golf Course. The Eagles carded the lowest score of the final day at 284 to jump into their second consecutive runner-up finish.
FGCU will now wait until May 4 for the NCAA Selection Show to see if they earn at at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament as they are ranked No. 53 in the latest www.GolfStat.com rankings. The Eagles were one of the last teams out of the tournament last season with Van Holmgren earning an individual spot in the NCAA Regionals after winning the ASUN individual title.
Overall, FGCU posted a 54-hole score of 859 with No. 39 North Florida (848) winning the team title. no. 36 Liberty took third finishing two strokes behind the Eagles after going three over on Tuesday compared to FGCU’s even performance.
The Eagles had all five of their scoring players finish among the top 15 led by Cherichella’s sixth place finish. Just behind were Hopkins and Madsen who each moved up into a tie for 11thwhile Frankie Capan III and Pierre Viallaneix tied for 14th.
Hopkins fired a 69 in the third round cutting six strokes off his Monday performance to move up. Madsen was par on the day along with Cherichella.
The Eagles finished with 49 birds in the tournament just five behind Liberty. Cherichella tied the tournament’s individual medalist, North Florida’s Nick Gabrelcick, with 14 over the three rounds. Capan was just behind with 13 birdies. Hopkins notched an Eagle on No. 12 to match Viallaneix’s from Monday’s second round.
In Tuesday’s final round, Madsen moved up nine spots with an even performance after carding two birdies to offset a pair of bogies. Hopkins jumped 15 spots thanks to his eagle and a pair of birds to shoot two under for the round. Cherichella also finished even in the round with three birdies and was one under after the front nine. Despite a tough start, Viallaneix had a strong back nine where she shot three under.
This marked the third time in program history for the Eagles to finish second in the ASUN Championship Tournament (2010, 2021, 2022). FGCU finished fifth in each of the five tournaments held before 2020 when no championship was held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
6 – Austin Cherichella – 70-72-71 – 213
T11 – Jon Hopkins – 73-75-69 – 217
T11 – Brady Madsen – 74-72-71 – 217
T14 – Frankie Capan III – 76-69-73 – 218
T14 – Pierre Viallaneix – 76-69-73 – 218
ASUN Tournament Field:
1. #39 North Florida – 280-283-285 – 848
2. #53 FGCU – 293-282-284 – 859
3. #36 Liberty – 294-280-287 – 861
4. #123 Lipscomb – 290-283-294 – 867
5. #108 Jacksonville – 301-276-291 – 868
6. #158 Jacksonville State – 292-290-292 – 874
7. North Alabama – 296-290-300 – 886
8. #225 Eastern Kentucky – 298-295-299 – 892
9. #189 Kennesaw State – 302-299-304 – 905
10. #255 Central Arkansas – 307-309-304 – 920
11. #232 Stetson – 312-307-302 – 921
12. #220 Bellarmine – 309-302-314 – 925
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HEAD COACH ANDREW DANNA:
Danna is in his third year at the helm of the FGCU men’s golf program after leading the Eagles to a second-place finish at the 2021 and 2022 ASUN Championships and being named the program’s first-ever ASUN Coach of the Year (2021). One of the best turnarounds in NCAA history saw the Green and Blue, led by Van Holmgren who became the first player to earn PING All-Region honors, jump from No. 257 in the final 2019-20 GolfStat.com rankings to a then program-best 65 to close out 2020-21. The Eagles set a new program-best during the 2022 season at No. 47 in the GolfStat.com rankings. Holmgren won the ASUN Championship individual title to qualify for the NCAA Regionals. Before taking over in Fort Myers, he served the 2018-19 season as the assistant at LSU. Prior to that he was the ultra-successful head coach for six years at Lynn University where he led them to the 2018 NCAA Division II national championship and was, subsequently, chosen the David Williams National Coach of the Year. He also led the Fighting Knights to three national runner-up placements, with a third and eighth place finish in his other two seasons.
FGCU Athletics sponsors events in November and April to benefit the FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and the Harry Chapin Food Bank (www.harrychapinfoodbank.org), FGCU Athletics’ charities of choice. For more information, including how to make a contribution, please visit www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry and utilize the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.
FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 92 conference regular season and tournament titles in just 14+ seasons at the Division I level. Additionally, in just 10 seasons of DI postseason eligibility, the Eagles have had a combined 44 teams or individuals compete in NCAA championships. Eight FGCU programs have earned a top-25 national ranking in their respective sport – including women’s basketball (No. 20, 2021-22), beach volleyball (No. 20, 2022) and both men’s soccer (2018, 2019) and women’s soccer (2018) as three of the most recent. In 2016-17, the Green and Blue posted a department-best sixth-place finish in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors’ Cup and top-100 showing nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had an ASUN and state of Florida best seven teams earn the NCAA’s Public Recognition Award for their Academic Progress Rate in their sport. FGCU also collectively earned a record 3.50 GPA in the classroom in the fall 2020 semester and has outperformed the general University undergraduate population for 25 consecutive semesters. The past five semesters (Fall 2019 – Fall 2021) each saw another milestone reached as all 15 programs achieved a 3.0-or-higher team GPA in each. The Eagles also served an all-time high 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two runners-up for the inaugural NACDA Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.