BIG EAST Reunites in Orlando for Annual Championship
April 28, 2012
CHICAGO - The DePaul golf team travels to Orlando for the 2012 BIG EAST Championship at Reunion Resort. The 33rd edition of the conference championship takes place at the Watson Course as the Blue Demons look to improve on their seventh-place finish from a year ago.
DePaul enters the event ranked eighth among the 12 BIG EAST programs in the Golfstat rankings. Defending champion Notre Dame is the top-ranked BIG EAST team followed by USF, Louisville, St. John’s, Villanova, Georgetown and Seton Hall.
The three-day, three-round championship starts Sunday with the Blue Demons beginning with an 8 a.m. ET tee time. DePaul’s fivesome for the league championship includes Jan Juelicher, Moritz Ackerhans, Ben Westley, Russell Budd and John Pavelko.
The Watson Course at Reunion Resort opened in November 2004 and annually ranks among the top resort courses and the best courses in Florida. It features a par-72 layout over 7,257 yards. Live scoring is available for the entire tournament at golfstat.com.
DePaul in the BIG EAST Championship: DePaul's best BIG EAST finish was a fifth-place showing in 2007... the Blue Demons have finished seventh in 2011 (tied), 2009 and 2008 and were eighth in 2006... Michael Furci owns DePaul's top finish with a fifth-place tie in 2010... Greg Doherty holds DePaul's best BIG EAST Championship score with a 2007 tournament total of 214 (-2)... Doherty finished in a tie for eighth in 2007... Maximilian Mayer and Ben Westley each finished in the top 10 in 2011... it marked the first time two DePaul golfer finished in the top 10 at the BIG EAST Championship... Mayer was eighth (220, +7) and Westley finished in a tie for 10th (222, +9)... four DePaul golfers have finished in top 10 with Doherty in 2007 and Furci's showing in 2010.
Noting the Blue Demons: Ben Westley leads the team with a scoring average of 74.73... he is just ahead of Moritz Ackerhans (75.04), Russell Budd (75.54) and Jan Juelicher (75.77)... four players have recorded a top 10 finish this season... Budd and Westley each have a team-high four top 25 finishes... Ackerhans (69, 70), Budd (69, 70), Juelicher (69, 70, 70) and Westley (69, 70) have posted rounds of 70 or better... Ackerhans posted the top 18-hole score a year ago with a 69 on two occasions... at the 2011 BIG EAST Championship, DePaul placed two in the top 10 for the first time in program history... Maximilian Mayer finished in eighth and Westley was tied for 10th.
Budd Records Hole-in-One: DePaul junior Russell Budd drilled a hole-in-one on the eighth hole at the Cardinal Club on a rain-shortened first day of the Cardinal Collegiate on Sept. 26. The shotgun start started Budd on the seventh hole and he nailed his hole-in-one on the 166-yard eighth hole.
Westley Earns Award at Adams Cup: Following the completion of the Adams Cup of Newport, senior golfer Ben Westley was named the recipient of the Robert Adams Exemplary Golfer Award. The award is presented each year at the Adams Cup of Newport.
The Robert Adams Exemplary Golfer Award is given to the player that best exemplifies Mr. Adams’ commitment to athletics, academics, citizenship and community service. Westley was nominated by DePaul coach Betty Kaufmann prior to the tournament.
Westley was DePaul’s top player last season and is a standout on and off the course. The senior has played in every event during his career and is a two-time team captain. His community service work includes partnering with the First Tee programs in Chicago and in the summers in Minnesota and also spending time with the Hook a Kid program, Miscericordia and the Ronald McDonald house. Westley also carries a 3.7 cumulative grade-point average as a member of the nation’s top academic golf program the last two seasons.
Academic Success is a First in Nation: Over the last two seasons, the Blue Demons have compiled to top team grade-point average in the nation according to the Golf Coaches Association of America. DePaul is the first program to earn the Academic National Champion award in back-to-back seasons. The 2009-10 team posted a cumulative GPA of 3.66 before the 2010-11 squad led the country with an identical 3.66 team GPA.
Looking Back: Adams Cup of Newport (Sept. 19-20) – DePaul finished 11th among the 19 teams competing... Russell Budd was the top finisher in a tie for 23rd (220, +5)... Ben Westley and Jan Juelicher each fired a 69 in a round. Cardinal Collegiate (Sept. 26-27) – Russell Budd (4th – 141, -3) and Ben Westley (t6th – 143, -1) finished in the top 10… Budd recorded a hole-in-one on the eighth hole… the first round was rained out and the tournament shortened to 36 holes… the Blue Demons finished in a tie for fourth among the 18 teams. John Dallio Memorial (Oct. 8-9) – Jan Juelicher (t7th – 219, +3) and Moritz Ackerhans (t9th – 220, +4) each finished in the top 10… DePaul placed fourth among 15 teams. Georgetown Intercollegiate (Oct. 17-18) – Moritz Ackerhans and Russell Budd finished in a tie for 13th place (222, +9)... Ben Westley also recorded a top 20 finish (t19th – 224, +11)... DePaul finished sixth out of 12 teams. The Match Play (Feb. 13-14) – DePaul finished with a 1-2 record... the Blue Demons lost to Villanova (3.5-2.5) and Loyola-Chicago (4.0-2.0) and defeated Illinois State (3.5-2.5)... Russell Budd, John Pavelko and Ben Westley each posted two victories in their individual matches. Wexford Plantation Intercollegiate (Feb. 20-21) – The Blue Demons finished 15th out of 17 teams... Moritz Ackerhans was the top finisher in a tie for 35th place (232, +16)... Russell Budd was a shot behind at 232 (+16) in a tie for 38th place. USF Invitational (March 4-6) – DePaul finished 14th out of 17 teams... Jan Juelicher led the team with a tie for 37th (223, +7). Spring Break Championship (March 23-25) – The Blue Demons were 15th out of 15 teams... Ben Westley (217, +4) finished in a tie for 24th... Westley and Jan Juelicher each fired a 70 in the second round. ASU Red Wolf Intercollegiate (April 2-3) – DePaul placed 10th out of 19 teams... Jan Juelicher and Moritz Ackerhans recorded top 20 finishes... Juelicher was tied for 11th (214 (+1)) and Ackherans was tied for 19th (217, (+4)). Earl Yestingsmeier Invitational (April 21-22) – The Blue Demons finished sixth among 15 teams... Ben Westley (224, +14) was tied for 20th and Russell Budd (225, +15) was in a group in 22nd place.