Monday Top 5: Georgia Tech rolls through ACC

The Georgia Tech men's golf team after winning the ACC Championship.

The Georgia Tech men's golf team after winning the ACC Championship.

1.) Title Contender

Georgia Tech posted the best round all three days at the ACC Championship and coasted to an impressive 20-shot victory. The win was enough to move the Yellow Jackets to the No. 2 spot in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings.

Paul Haley, a senior from Dallas, claimed the individual title, making birdie on his final hole and leading Georgia Tech to a record performance. The Yellow Jackets posted an ACC-record 33-under total on the Old North State Club layout in New London, N.C. The win was Georgia Tech’s third-straight ACC title and fifth in the last six years.

Georgia Tech advanced to match play last year at The Honors Course and is firmly in position to be one of the top contenders this postseason.

2.) Climbing Quickly

The Morehead State women’s golf program is in just its third year of competition after being dormant since the 1982-83 season. How quickly the Eagles have begun to soar. With a 14-shot victory over runner-up Murray State at the Ohio Valley Conference Championship, Morehead State has earned the league’s automatic qualifying bid to play in NCAA Regional competition.

The Eagles, which are led by former Kentucky head coach Stephanie Barker, placed four golfers in the top 10, including individual medalist Emma Jonsson.

3.) Postseason Surprise?

The Arizona women’s team has not been what many thought they may be this year. The Wildcats have wiggled into the top 10, but expectations were a bit higher for this squad, which finished No. 4 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings, returned its starting five and experienced a very good run late last year.

Last spring the Wildcats closed the year with a win at the Pac-10 Conference Championship, a victory at the NCAA West Regional and then a fifth-place finish at the NCAA Championship.

Last week Arizona finished second at the Pac-10 Conference Championship, finishing just five shots behind top-ranked USC. Could this be a sign? Don’t be surprised if Arizona is a legitimate contender over the next month.

4.) School Pride

Three Division I schools have have claimed both men’s and women’s conference championships this spring: Notre Dame claimed both Big East Conference Championship titles; Yale won Ivy League titles; and UNC-Wilmington won the Colonial Athletic Association’s men’s and women’s championships.

5.) Viking Power

Cleveland State won its third league title in the past four years and its fourth in the past six seasons with a 7-shot victory at the Horizon League Championship at Mission Inn Resort in Howey-In-The-Hills, Fla. Earning the Horizon League’s AQ, the Vikings, which have plenty of NCAA Regional experience, will look to advance one step further to the NCAA Championship for the first time.

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