SAN ANTONIO (Feb. 12, 2017) – The Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) men's golf team and Head Coach Alan E. Baxter have announced the top five players for the team's first tournament – the University of the Incarnate Word's (UIW) 2017 James S. Litz Memorial. The event will take place Feb. 13-14 on the par-71, 7,007-yard course at the Republic Golf Club in San Antonio.
The 54-hole tournament will begin at 8 a.m. on Monday, and the teams will play two rounds that day, and the final round on Tuesday.
Joining OLLU – which is ranked No. 16 in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Men's Golf Coaches' Top 25 Preseason Poll – are Abilene Christian University, Alabama State University, New Orleans, Oklahoma City (ranked No. 1 in the NAIA), Oklahoma Wesleyan University (ranked No. 21 in the NAIA), Odessa Junior College, Prairie View A&M University, Schreiner University, the University of St. Thomas, Texas Southern University, UIW and Western Texas Junior College.
The starting five for the Saints will be Christopher Schriedel (SR/Helotes, Texas), Rafael Jauregui (JR/Morelia, Michoacan, Mexico), Stevan Hinojosa (JR/Mission, Texas), Kane Ybarra (FR/San Antonio, Texas) and Jeremy Gordon (SR/San Antonio, Texas). This follows three weeks of practice and qualifiers. OLLU is entering a second team for the first tournament. It will be comprised of: David Ray Jr. (FR/San Antonio, Texas), Merrick Ramos (SR/Helotes, Texas), Jon Ybarra (JR/Mission, Texas), Jonah Guajardo (FR/San Antonio, Texas) and Taylor Kucia (SO/McAllen, Texas).
Baxter commented, "The first two tournaments, we are entering two teams. They are in affect qualifiers for the last three tournaments. We will battle the other schools and ourselves to find the top five. We have a deep team and we want to make sure all the players have an opportunity to travel. We have some health issues with this first tournament, so we will not be at 100 percent, but the games must go on. I am looking forward to seeing who is going to step up. I anticipate changes in the line-up for the second and third tournaments. We will see. As mentioned, I believe we are better than a top 10 team. Currently, Golfstat has us ranked 14 in the NAIA. We have beaten quite a few teams ranked higher than us. Thus, I am curious why we are not ranked higher. Additionally, we have beat a top seven team in the NCAA D2. We, without a doubt, played the toughest fall schedule of any NAIA team and did well. I won't play politics. We will let our clubs do our talking from here on out."
The Saints' next tournament will take place Feb. 19-20 in Victoria, Texas. The Claud Jacobs Invitational is hosted by the University of Houston-Victoria at the Victoria Country Club.
After that, the Saints look forward to co-hosting the San Antonio Shootout with the Oklahoma City University Stars on Feb. 27-28 at TPC San Antonio.
Our Lady of the Lake University is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2016-2017 as a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics. The University began competing in the NAIA in men's soccer and volleyball in 2007. A year later, they added women's soccer, golf and tennis. In 2009, the Saints began competing in cross-country, softball and basketball. In 2014, OLLU added two more sports — baseball and track and field. There are now 13 intercollegiate athletic teams at OLLU. All athletic alumni and up to two family members will receive free admission to basketball and volleyball games throughout the season. Baseball is not included in this special offer. All other home games are free and open to the public.