Southern Arkansas will be one of 20 teams in Warren, OH, this week competing in the 2023 NCAA Division II Men's Golf National Championship.
It's the Muleriders' first-ever trip to the national event. They are one of six from the Central/Midwest Regional. Grand Valley State, Missouri S&T, Maryville, Washburn and Great American Conference foe Harding join SAU in Warren after the six teams were the last standing in the 20-team regional field in Winona, MN.
One hundred and eight golfers (100 team-associated student-athletes + eight individual golfers) will compete to become the individual national champion which will be crowned following Wednesday's final 18 holes of match play qualifying.
The first tee shot on Monday gave the Muleriders an official start to a program record 11th tournament of the 2022-23 campaign. In 29 rounds, SAU owns a sub-300 average at 298.17 and has finished in the top eight in every tournament with the exception of one.
Last week, SAU entered the final round of play at the NCAA DII Central/Midwest Regional six shots back of the advancement line, equaled its round two performance with a 291 over its final 18 holes to force a three-team playoff with GAC foes Henderson State and Harding for the final two berths into the national tournament.
When the smoke cleared, it was the Muleriders that posted a two-under in the sudden death playoff to punch the program's first-ever ticket to the NCAA DII National Championship.
Junior Connor Harrington sank a birdie on the par-4, 391-yard No. 16 and true freshman Luke Cote notched a birdie on the par-4, 413-yard No. 17; a hole he tripled bogeyed in round three and the Muleriders used pars from junior Caleb Miller (par-4, 394-yard No. 14) and senior Brendan Little (par-4, 378-yard No. 18) and a one-over from sophomore Logan McDonald (par-3, 208-yard No. 15) to shoot -2 and match Harding in the playoff as both teams beat Henderson State by three strokes.