LANCASTER, Pa. - The Franklin & Marshall men's golf team heads back to the Centennial Conference (CC) Championships this weekend in search of its sixth consecutive title. Brookside Country Club will host the tournament once again, with play beginning on Friday and ending on Sunday.
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CC Championship History
The Diplomats, winners of eight of the last ten CC tournaments, were victorious in last year's competition due to strong play from multiple members of the team. The team's total score, 286, reset the conference record books for the lowest round ever at a CC Championship, and is the second-lowest team round in any tournament in conference history.
Ben Mitchell '18 took home the crown, leading every round and finishing nine strokes ahead of the runner-up. Current Diplomats Justin Lankler and Seiichiro Nakai finished third and sixth respectively, while Steve Nicholas and Kevin McGloin both finished in the top-25.
F&M has now won 15 conference titles overall, ten of which have come since the start of the Centennial.
A Look at F&M
The Diplomats were able to pick off right where they left off after a strong fall season. A first-place finish to begin the spring session at the Swarthmore Invitational got the team off to a hot start. F&M ended March with a sixth-place finish at the McDaniel Spring Invitational, before placing fourth at the following week's Hershey Cup. Most recently, F&M was the runner-up at the Rosemont Raven Invitational.
First-year Jared Berlin bounced back nicely in the second round at Rosemont, bettering his first round card by six strokes and ending with an even 144 for a second-place finish. Junior Seiichiro Nakai followed closely behind Berlin with a score of 146, placing third in the tournament.
Steve Nicholas earned the CC Golfer of the Week Award for the week of April 9 after a victory at the Hershey Cup. Nicholas shot for par with a score of 142 en route to his first tournament win. Nicholas placed third earlier in the spring at the Swarthmore Invitational alongside Justin Lankler and Tyler Wassell as all three carded a 78.
A Look at the Field
Danny Harcourt of Gettysburg College looks to be a threat entering the CC Championship. Harcourt ended the fall season with the second-lowest scoring average and four top-10 finishes, and was recently named the CC Golfer of the Week after a strong spring performance.
Gettysburg is coming off two straight tournament wins, including one at the Rosemont Invitational, and McDaniel has won the five CC titles of the last 14 years that the Diplomats have not.
In the event that inclement weather suspends a round of play over the weekend, the tournament's final round can be extended to occur on Monday.