FORT MYERS, Fla. – Coming off a team title on Monday at the Cobra-PUMA Invitational, the FGCU men’s golf team will look to carry over the momentum during this weekend’s trip north to Chicago for the John Dallio Memorial Tournament on Saturday and Sunday at Ruffled Feathers Golf Club.
It marks the second straight year the Eagles have participated in the John Dallio Memorial, taking second in last year’s tournament which was their season-opening event. Second-year head coach Brent Jensen, who has led FGCU to a trio of team titles since last fall, is a native of Chicago.
The 15-team field will play two rounds on Saturday beginning with a shotgun start at 8:15 a.m. FGCU will be paired with Drake and Northern Iowa, and will start on holes 11-14. Missouri is the top ranked team in the field with a No. 47 ranking from Golf Week on Oct. 2.
Seniors Brandon Pena (Clewiston, Fla./Clewiston HS) and Alex Medinis (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS), along with freshman Jack Hernandez (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot HS) will each make their third straight start. Sophomore Matt Cote will (Palm Harbor, Fla./Palm Harbor University HS) will occupy the No. 4 spot in the lineup, while Bloomington, Ill. product Kyle English (Bloomington, Ill./University HS) will bring local knowledge to the table this weekend.
Coming off the first individual tournament victory of his career at the Cobra-PUMA Invite, Pena was named the Atlantic Sun Golfer of the Week on Wednesday. Pena has finished under-par in four of six rounds this season, including all three last tournament, to produce a 71.3 stroke average. The Clewiston, Fla. product has a streak of 33 straight rounds with a contributing score.
Medinis enters Saturday with streak of four consecutive par or lower rounds to his credit and a 73.0 stroke average through the first two tournaments. Last weekend, Medinis produced his 10th career top 10 finish, carding a four-under 210 (72-70-70) to tie for sixth place in the individual standings. The tournament start is the 25th of his career.
The youthful parts of the FGCU lineup, Cote and Hernandez have nearly identical starts to their collegiate career. A year ago, Cote was named the A-Sun Freshman of the Year and began his collegiate career with four under-par rounds in his first two tournaments. Hernandez fired three consecutive under-par rounds at the Cobra-PUMA Invite to finish in sole possession of fourth place in just his second collegiate tournament. Through six rounds, Hernandez sports a 73.8 stroke average, while Cote carded a two-under 70 in last weekend’s second round.
English played his way back into the starting five at the Cobra-PUMA Invitational after finishing in a tie for 14th overall. The junior was entered into last weekend’s tournament as an individual and went on to shoot a 75-72(E)-69(-3)/216(E). Over the summer, English won the prestigious 92nd Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) Amateur Championship held at Medinah Country Club.
Live in-progress scoring of the tournament can be found at www.GolfStat.com. A link to the live scoring can be found by going to the FGCU men’s golf schedule and clicking on the day’s event or by going to www.GolfStat.com and searching for the John Dallio Memorial on the front page. Twitter updates about the Eagles during this weekend’s tournament can be found at www.twitter.com/FGCUeagles or on the main page of www.FGCUAthletics.com.
FGCU PARTICIPANTS (Starting Hole)
Brandon Pena (11)
Alex Medinis (12)
Matt Cote (13A)
Jack Hernandez (13B)
Kyle English (14)
TOURNAMENT FIELD (Golf Week Ranking as of Oct. 2)
Chicago State (272)
Eastern Illinois (201)
Northern Iowa (173)
Western Illinois (176)
Wisconsin Green-Bay (258)