PINEHURST, N.C. – The eighth annual Acura College Alumni Team Championship recently awarded a championship trophy to Utah State, and two championship trophies to The University of Tulsa, for three separate tournament divisions.
The Tulsa alumni team consisted of Michael Alsup, Chris Noel, Billy Lowry and Aaron Bell. Tulsa no longer fields a men’s golf team, having dropped the program in 2015.
Utah State University finished in first place for the net scoring division with a two-day score of 246, and Tulsa was the Gross Division champion after carding a two-day total of 260. Tulsa also finished in first place for the bracket division, which is a unique match play format modeled after college basketball’s national championship. The participating teams are paired with other university teams and advance through a single elimination bracket for each nine holes played until there were two teams remaining to play in a sudden-death finale to determine the overall champion.
The Acura College Alumni Team Championship was created as a grass-roots championship for Acura, the preferred vehicle of Pinehurst Resort, and the 36-hole competition has been played on two of Pinehurst’s premier courses including the famed Pinehurst No. 2. The championship field is determined through 60 individual qualifying golf tournaments held at Division I universities across the country. The participating schools come from 13 NCAA Conferences. The winning foursome from each university qualifier advances to the National Championship at Pinehurst. The qualifying tournaments serve as fundraisers for the university alumni or athletic foundations.
In addition to providing the opportunity to advance to the National Championship, Acura sponsors a Hole-in-One contest at each university tournament with Acura vehicles on display. Additional Hole-in-One Prizes at the qualifying level were provided by Pinehurst Resort and Titleist.
In addition to the championship, the participants had the opportunity to play Pinehurst’s newest par-3 golf course, The Cradle, which also served as the course for the finals of the Bracket Division Championship.
New this year was the addition of Balfour as a supporting sponsor for this year’s championship. The leader in athletic and collegiate rings, presented the winning teams with certificates for new college rings.
“We are pleased to have the Acura College Alumni Team Championship on our long list of Championships that have been held on the fairways of Pinehurst,” said Tom Pashley, President of Pinehurst Resort and Country Club. “Acura is a premier partner for the Resort, and the Alumni Championship has opened up an entirely new market for Pinehurst. You can really feel the team spirit these golfers have for their universities throughout their stay at Pinehurst.”