South Carolina and Clemson have been selected to play in an NCAA Regional starting on May 16th.
Clemson’s selection to the post-season marks the 40th consecutive time the Tigers will play in the NCAA post season. The Gamecocks have been to 29 NCAA Regionals in the program’s history.
The 23rd ranked Tigers will also be a fourth seed in their Region with Oklahoma State as the top seeded team. Clemson will play in the Columbus, Ohio Regional on the famed Scarlett Course at Ohio State University.
The 26th ranked Gamecocks are the fourth seed in the Region headed by top seeded Oklahoma. USC will travel to Norman, Oklahoma to play in the Regional at the Jimmy Austin OU Golf Club.
The Gamecocks are coming off an eleventh place finish in the SEC Championship while the Tigers finished in a tie for ninth at the ACC Championship.
The Region South Carolina will play in was originally to be held in Alabama, but course conditions forced a late change and the Regional was shifted to Oklahoma.
“I’m excited about our selection to the Norman Regional and I believe it’s a good golf course for us,” said USC head coach Bill McDonald. “We were in a regional there in 2012, and it’s a solid layout,” he added.
Clemson has played at the Ohio State course several times in the past, but this will be the first trip to the Scarlett course for any current Tiger,
In 1980 Clemson made its first appearance in an NCAA Championship at the course.
“Joey Maxon (Clemson Assistant Coach) has played and coached at the course,” said Clemson head coach Jordan Byrd. “We are going to use his knowledge to help develope a game plan for the tournament,” he said.
South Carolina is playing on the home course of the Sooners, the top ranked team in the country
“It’s always an exciting challenge to be competing against the No. 1 team in the country on their home course,” said McDonald.”
In the Columbus Regional the host Ohio State team is the sixth seed a fact that was noticed by Byrd.
“You don’t like to see the host school in the sixth seed. When our guys saw the lineup they thought we were placed in the toughest region,” said the Clemson coach.
The Norman Region includes four SEC teams in the 13 team field. In all 13 SEC teams out of the 14 schools in the conference made the field. Only Alabama was not invited to play in a Regional.
“Four SEC teams there speaks to our conference depth,” said the Gamecock coach.
Georgia Tech and Duke will join the Tigers in Columbus. The ACC has 10 teams from the conference in the field from the 12 schools with golf teams.
“We’ve played with Georgia Tech, Arkansas, Duke and a few others. We can’t control who is in the Region so we are going to concentrate on ourselves and our process,” noted Byrd.
Furman’s Ross Funderburke has been invited to compete in the tournament as an individual.
The Paladin junior will compete in the Palm Beach Garden Regional being played at the PGA Natonal Resort course in Palm Beach Gardens.
Funderburke earned All-SoCon honors for his play this year. He earned six top-20 finishes including his best performance of the year when he was the runner-up in the Hootie at Bulls Bay.
The Palm Beach Garden’ Regional top seeded team is Vanderbilt.
The College of Charleston, the Colonial Athletic Association champion, and Charleston Southern, the Big South Conference champion will also be in the field.