The Loop

Conference call, May 4

Playing without their best player, Colt Knost, in the first round proved too much to overcome for SMU as the Tulsa men cruised to the team title (by 20 strokes over Alabama-Birmingham; 29 over the fourth-place Mustangs) at the Conference USA Championship. All five Golden Hurricane golfers finished in the top-20 as the team won its 11th league title. UAB senior Garrett Osborn managed to hold of the Hurricane hit parade, however, claiming medalist honors with a four-under 212 total.

For a preview of the final three men's conference championships, see below. Check back next week to see a preview of each of the women's Division I regionals as well as a review of the teams picked to play in the men's D-I regionals.



Field: __Akron, Ball State, Bowling Green State, Eastern Michigan, Kent State, Miami (Ohio), Northern Illinois, Ohio, Toledo


2006 champions: Kent State, by 11 strokes over Ball State; Marc Bourgeois, Tommy Wiegand__, Kent State (tie)


Skinny: __Hard to see anyone keeping Kent State from taking its third straight MAC title and 17th overall. Closest ranked team to the Golden Flashes, No. 67 according to Golfstat, is Akron (No. 90). All that said, Kent likely needs to win the conference title (and get its automatic bid) to make it to the NCAA post-season.

For live scoring, link here to Golfstat


Atlantic 10__


__Field:__Charlotte, Dayton, Dayton, Duquesne, Fordham, George Washington, La Salle, Rhode Island, Richmond, St. Bonaventure, Saint Joseph's, Temple, Xavier

__ 2006 champions: __Charlotte, by three strokes over Xavier; __Jason Kokrak, John Streibich, __Xavier

Skinny: Jamie Green's Charlotte squad held off a strong final-day charge from Xavier to claim its first A-10 title in 2006 in its first year in the conference. This year, the 49ers are again the favorite and shouldn't have to sweat things out. The interesting drama might come in the race for medalist honors; Kokrak, a senior from Warren, Ohio,  has a shot a becoming the first player to win the A-10 individual title three times.




__Field:__Central Connecticut State, Fairleigh Dickinson, LIU-Brooklyn, Monmouth, Mount St. Mary's, Quinnipiac, Robert Morris, Sacred Heart, St. Francis (N.Y.), St. Francis (Pa.), Wagner

__ 2006 champions: __St. Francis (Pa.), by two strokes over Quinnipiac; Steve Foisy, St. Francis (Pa.)*

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__Skinny:__Defending champion St. Francis (Pa.) will play with heavy hearts after the death last March of its  long-time coach, Bob Hahn. A pair of schools from the Nutmeg State, Central Connecticut and Sacred Heart, have the best shot at taking the team title.