NEW YORK (Oct. 16, 2013) – Add another first for the Oklahoma Christian men’s golf program – the Eagles’ initial first-place vote in the NCAA Division II rankings.
OC was the only team outside of No. 1-ranked Barry (Fla.) to receive a first-place nod in the latest Golf World/Nike Golf Division II College Coaches’ Poll, which was released Wednesday. The Eagles jumped three spots in the poll to No. 18.
It’s been a successful fall season so far for OC, which has won two tournaments – the Newman Fall Invitational in Wichita, Kan., and the Western New Mexico Fall Intercollegiate in Goodyear, Ariz. OC was third in the Ryan Palmer Foundation Invitational in Amarillo, Texas, and earlier this week finished second as the only non-NCAA Division I team in Missouri-Kansas City’s Bill Ross Intercollegiate in Overland Park, Kan.
Voting for the current poll took place before this week’s tournament.
“Being 18th is fantastic,” OC coach David Lynn said. “We’re slowly moving up, which is what we want to do. To be honest, I think we’ll continue to move up as we play more Division II competition throughout the course of the year. I think the Division II coaches are giving us accurate credit for how we’ve played so far. … For them to be recognizing our play on a national level, that’s fantastic for our program.”
Barry, which received the other 16 first-place votes, led the poll, followed by South Carolina-Aiken and Lynn (Fla.), with Central Missouri and Nova Southeastern (Fla.) tied for fourth. Chico State (Calif.), Columbus State (Ga.), California State-Monterey Bay, West Florida and California State-Stanislaus rounded out the top 10.
OC was the only Heartland Conference team in the top 25, although Dallas Baptist (Texas) and St. Mary’s (Texas) received votes.
The Eagles will play next week in the National Christian College Athletic Association Championship at The Hombre Golf Club in Panama City Beach, Fla. OC won last year’s NCCAA title. Several teams who received votes in the Division II poll also will be in the NCCAA field – Dallas Baptist, Lee (Tenn.) and Colorado Christian.