The Coastal Carolina men’s golf team will be playing in its eighth consecutive NCAA Regional Championship, and 10th in its last 12 years, earning an at-large berth to the NCAA Virginia Regional, played May 19-21 in Radford, Va., at the Pete Dye River Course of Virginia Tech.
Coastal will join Big South Champion and automatic qualifier Liberty in the NCAA Regional field, marking the just the third time two Big South schools participated in an NCAA Regional in the same year. The Flames were sent to the NCAA Arizona Regional as the five seed.
Virginia Tech will host the Regional, featuring 13 teams. Georgia Tech is the Regional’s top seed and Coastal is seeded 11th in the 13-team field.
Six 54-hole Regional Championships (Colorado, San Diego, Indiana, Virginia, Florida and Arizona) will be conducted May 19-21. Thirteen teams and 10 individual qualifiers will compete at each of three regionals while the other three regionals will have 14 teams and five individual qualifiers. The low five teams and the low individual not on those teams from each regional will advance to the finals.
To advance to the NCAA Championships – a feat Coastal has accomplished 2005, ’06 and ’07, the Chanticleers will need to place among the Region’s top five. The 2011 NCAA Championships will be played at Karsten Creek, home to the Oklahoma State’s golf programs, June 1-4.
Ranked No. 61 in the nation by Golfweek and No.62 by Golfstat, the Chanticleers earned their way into the 2011 field by finishing the 2010-11 season with a .510 winning percentage (74-71-1 record) and playing the 48th-toughest schedule in the country (according to Golfweek.)
This season, Coastal Carolina posted a team scoring average of 294.34, sixth-best on the school’s single-season to 10 list. The Chants played in 12 tournaments in 2010-11, finishing among the top 10 11 times with three top five finishes. Redshirt junior and 2008 Big South Golfer of the Year Tripp McAllister leads the team with a 73.97 season scoring average. He shot a one-under 212 and tied for 35th at the 2008 NCAA East Regional before tying for 60th at the 2009 Northeast Regional.
Sophomore Sebastian Soderberg, a two-time All-Big South honoree, averages 74.00 strokes per round and placed seventh at this year’s Big South Championship. He tied for 68th at the 2010 NCAA East Regional.
Drew Ernst and Charlie Winegardner also have NCAA Regional experience. Ernst tied for 11th, carding a +8 for 54 holes, at the 2009 Northeast Regional and was +7 for three rounds in the 2010 NCAA East Regional to tie for 30th. Winegardner tied for 68th in the 2010 NCAA East Regional.