FORT MYERS, Florida. – The FGCU men’s golf team will close the fall campaign in style as the Eagles start the White Sands Bahamas Invitational Friday morning at Ocean Club Golf Course on Paradise Island. The event will run over three days for all 54 holes and feature five top 60 programs on the course.
Hosted by the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, the Bahamas Invitational kicks off Friday morning at 8 a.m. with a shotgun start. Live scoring will be available via www.GolfStat.com.
The Eagles enter the weekend in 68th place in the first national GolfStat ranking of the year. The FGCU has finished second in its last two tournaments – the Graeme McDowell Invitational and the BMW Collegiate Invitational.
Austin Cherichella (Orlando, FL / Lake Nona HS) and Brady Madsen (Raymond, Minn./MacCray HS / Winona State) lead the Eagles overall this year with point averages of 73.11 in nine rounds played. Lucas Fallotico (Cernusco Sul Naviglo, Italy / Istituto Comprensivo Aldo Moro Seregno) played in the BMW Collegiate Invitational where he averaged 71.33 strokes per lap.
Pierre Viallaneix (Apopka, FL / Winter Park HS / West Carolina) and Jon hopkins (Bishop’s Stortford, England / Mississippi Gulf Coast CC) will complete the Eagles scoring team. Viallaniex finished seventh at the BMW Invitational to lead the Eagles and is averaging 73.67 points this season. Hopkins is averaging 74.11 strokes per set this season.
Henri tschopp (Rapperswil-Jona, Switzerland / Western Texas College / Dodge City CC) will make his first appearance of the season as an individual alongside Thomas salanito (Palm Harbor, Florida / Clearwater Central Catholic), who has an average of 73.67 points this season, which will play his third tournament of the season.
After the Bahamas Invitational, the Eagles will be out until the return to competition from Jan.31 to Feb.31. 1 at the Sea Best Invitational hosted by Jacksonville.
1. Brady Madsen
2. Austin Cherichella
3. Pierre Viallaneix
4. Jon hopkins
5. Lucas Fallotico
Thomas salanito (Individual)
Henri tschopp (Individual)
White Sands Bahamas Invitational Field:
# 54 Arkansas Little Rock (host)
# 196 Ball Green
# 24 Eastern Tennessee State
# 123 Florida Atlantic
# 68 University of the Gulf Coast of Florida
# 87 Lamar
# 114 Lip comb
# 85 Michigan
# 53 Mississippi
# 28 San Francisco
# 21 South Florida
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HEAD COACH ANDREW DANNA:
Danna has just completed her second year at the helm of the FGCU men’s golf program, leading the Eagles to a second place finish at the ASUN Championship. One of the best turnovers in NCAA history saw the Green and Blue, led by Van Holmgren who became the first player to win PING All-Region honors, moved from No.257 in the final GolfStat.com 2019-2020 ranking to a 65 best schedule to close out 2020-21. Prior to taking over at Fort Myers, he served the 2018-19 season as an assistant at LSU. Previously, he was the successful head coach for six years at Lynn University, where he led them to the 2018 NCAA Division II National Championship and was later named David Williams National Coach of the Year. . He also led the Fighting Knights to three national standings, placing third and eighth in his other two seasons.
FGCU Athletics sponsors events in November and April to benefit FGCU Campus Food Pantry (www.fgcu.edu/foodpantry) and 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 use the hashtag #FeedFGCU to help raise awareness.
FGCU teams have combined to win an incredible 85 regular season conference and tournament titles in just 14+ seasons at the Division I level. Plus, in just nine seasons of DI playoff eligibility, the Eagles brought together 42 teams or individuals competing in the NCAA Championships. Eight FGCU programs placed in the top 25 in their respective sports, including women’s basketball (# 21, 2020-21), beach volleyball (# 20, 2021) and men’s football (2018 , 2019) and women’s football (2018) as three of the most recent. In 2016-2017, the Greens and Blues secured a sixth place, the best in the department, in the DI-AAA Learfield Directors Cup and a top 100 nationally, ahead of several Power-5 and FBS institutions. In 2018-19, the Eagles had the top seven ASUN and Florida State teams that won the NCAA Public Recognition Award for their rate of academic progress in their sport. FGCU also collectively achieved a record 3.50 GPA in the classroom in the fall semester of 2020 and outperformed the general undergraduate population of the University for 24 consecutive semesters. The Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Fall 2020, and Spring 2021 semesters each saw another milestone, with all 15 programs each achieving a cumulative team GPA of 3.0 or higher. The Eagles also completed a record 7,200 volunteer hours in 2017 – being recognized as one of two finalists for the NACDA’s First Community Service Award presented by the Fiesta Bowl.