Posted: Sep 11, 2019
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — With eight returning lettermen and a quartet of newcomers, the Cal Poly men's golf team opens its 2019-20 fall season Monday and Tuesday at the 2019 Ram Masters Invitational hosted by Colorado State.
The 17-team tournament will be held at the Fort Collins Country Club with the course measuring 7,218 yards and a par of 72. Monday's shotgun start is set for 7 a.m. PDT with the final round on Tuesday to begin at 7 a.m. with golfers from the first and 10th tees.
With the team's leading scorer of a year ago, Thomas Lehman, gone, 19th-year head coach Scott Cartwright will look for seniors Sage Casaga and Dominick Hoover plus junior Tanner Podres to help fill the void.
Podres was a 10th of a stroke behind Lehman for the team's scoring title, averaging 73.4 strokes per round with four top-20 finishes and 12 rounds of par or better, including three rounds in the 60s.
Last year, Podres finished second in the UC Santa Barbara Collegiate, fourth in the Sacramento State Invitational and fifth in the UC Irvine Invitational.
A transfer from Monterey Peninsula College a year ago, Hoover was third in scoring during the 2018-19 season with a 75.2 scoring average and five rounds of par or better. His lone top-20 finish was a tie for 18th place in the season-opening Hartford Hawks Invitational.
Casaga averaged 78.4 strokes over 20 rounds, including a 70 in the UC Irvine Invitational and a 72 in the Sacramento State Invitational.
Other returnees include sophomores Will Draper (76.0 scoring average), Adil Bir Singh (77.2), Cade Casaga (78.2), Peter Faragia (78.2) and Bryce Loosigian (80.8).
The freshman foursome includes Luke Adam of St. Joseph High School in Santa Maria, Calif., Joseph Moles from Righetti High School, also in Santa Maria, Austin Liu from Oak Park High School in Oak Park, Calif., and Nicholas Mok from Singapore.
"This year's team is eager to get after it and have put in nine days of hard work to prepare for the new season with sights on building to a Big West championship next spring," said Cartwright.
"Some very talented freshman have joined the squad this year and will combine with some top returners to return Cal Poly golf to many championships in the future," Cartwright added.
Podres, Draper, Liu, Adam and Singh make up Cal Poly's travel squad for next week's tournament.
In addition to Cal Poly and Colorado State, other teams competing in the 2019 Ram Masters Invitational are Air Force, Cal State Fullerton, Creighton, Denver, Fresno State, Grand Canyon, Houston Baptist, Northern Colorado, Pacific, South Dakota, Utah State, Utah Valley, UTEP, Wichita State and Wyoming.
Colorado State claimed the team title in last year's event and medalist was Dan Starzinski of Wyoming at 11 under par, a tournament record. Starzinski will be back to defend his title.
Cal Poly also competed in the 2013 Ram Masters Invitational, placing seventh. Jordan Wright was the top Mustang finisher, placing third.