Brown Golf Preview: Bears Ready For Run At Ivy Title
April 4, 2008
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - After challenging for the Ivy title through the last few holes of last year's Ivy League Men's Golf Championship, Brown is loaded for bear and should once again challenge for the title with a veteran squad. Four of Brown's top five golfers return from last year's second place finish at the Ivy Championship at the Galloway National Golf Club, including first team All-Ivy selections Larry Haertel `08 and Conor Malloy '09.
Former assistant coach Michael Hughes has taken over the Brown head coaching reigns on an interim basis and has familiarity with the Brown team and its players should allow the Bears' to succeed without missing a beat.
Haertel may well be remembered as the top Brown golfer of all time. A three-time All-New England and two-time first team All-Ivy performer, Haertel was the first Brown golfer to win the Ivy League individual title in 2006. He came back with a second place finish at last year's Ivy Championship, and was the first Brown golfer to win the New England Individual Championship in 2007. He was also an Academic All-Ivy selection in 2007, and played in the prestigious Northeast Amateur Championship last summer.
A steady performer, Malloy placed sixth at last year's Ivy League Championship to earn All-Ivy honors, shooting 77-71-76 at the Galloway National Golf Club. He also had a top 10 finish at the Yale Invitational and a Top 20 performance at the Eastern Kentucky Invitational.
Talented sophomore John Giannuzzi is coming off a 13th place finish at last year's Ivy Championship with rounds of 75-78-78. Giannuzzi, who placed second at the Northeast Invitational, has been a solid performer for the Bears and has consistently played in Brown's top five.
Junior Chris Hoffman is a team leader who has shown steady improvement throughout his career. He proved that he can compete at the highest level after firing a one-under par 69 at the McDonald Cup at the Yale Golf Course. Hoffman was also in Brown's top five throughout the fall season and was Bruno's top scorer at the Navy Invitational, placing 35th overall with a two-day 153.
Coach Hughes will evaluate the Bears through the early spring and expects some talented players to step into the starting five. Senior Ryan Larson is expected to contribute after shooting 74 at the Navy Invitational in the fall. Freshman Michael Amato was Brown's top scorer at the ECAC Championship in the fall held at the Shelter Harbor Country Club (75-78). Freshman Mark Dee contributed at the ECAC Championship and Yale Invitational in the fall.