Sept. 7, 2013
WACO, Texas - The Baylor men's golf team opens its 2013-14 season on Sunday at the Gopher Invitational hosted by the University of Minnesota. at the Windsong Farm Golf Club in Independence, Minn.
The two-day, 54-hole event will be played at on the par-71, 7,152 yard course. Baylor is one of 12 teams in the field, including California, Central Arkansas, Iowa State, Kent State, Michigan State, Minnesota, New Mexico, Notre Dame, Penn State, St. John's and Toledo.
"The guys are all ready to get back," head coach Greg Priest said. "We are going to have a lot of experience this year, so that's exciting to get started here and have a quick tournament. We are ready to get going."
Baylor, after competing in its 16th consecutive NCAA Regional in 2013, is returning six letterwinners from a season ago. The Bears season-opening lineup features five returning players, including Kyle Jones, Jerry Ruiz, Mikkel Bjerch-Andressen, Filippo Zucchetti and Andreas Gjesteby.
"Where we didn't have a lot of experience last year, now we do," Priest said. "We are looking for those older guys who have the most experience to really step up and lead this team."
Baylor welcomes five newcomers to the team this year. Sophomore Patrick Bailey (Houston, Texas), and freshmen Jackson Heazel (Atlanta, Ga.), Luke Neeley (Mansfield, Texas), Nick Thornton (Boerne, Texas) and Diego Trevino (The Woodlands, Texas).
"It's going to be a good group," Priest said. "We have got a couple of guys that have the opportunity to jump in and play, and we have a couple that it may take a little longer to get acclimated. It's a solid group, and I think we have a lot more depth this year than we have had in the past. That's pretty exciting. It kind of keeps all of the guys on their toes knowing they have to go out and give their best every single day."
Baylor players will tee off from the 10th hole in the opening round. Bjerch-Andresen has the first tee time at 7:30 a.m. CT, and he'll be followed in 13-minute intervals by Gjesteby, Zucchetti, Ruiz and Jones, respectively. The Bears will also start from No. 10 in the second round, with tee times beginning at 12:20 p.m.
Live scoring information for the Gopher Invitational will be available at Golfstat.com. Follow the official twitter feed of Baylor men's golf, @BaylorMGolf, for updates throughout the season.