The 2018 NCAA Division II Men’s Golf National Championships begin Monday morning in Muscle Shoals, Alabama and there is no shortage of storylines for the Florida Southern Moccasins, who are making their 39th trip to the national finals, the most of any D-II team in the country. In addition to the usual title race that every team is running, the Mocs go into this year’s tournament with the label of defending national champion with a five-man roster that is nearly identical to the one that brought home the banner in 2017. The finals will also bring to a close the careers of two of the most decorated players in team history, as well as that of head coach Doug Gordin, who is retiring after nearly 40 years as a college golf coach, including the last 23 at Florida Southern.
|Thursday, May. 24|
NCAA Division II National Quarterfinal vs. Lincoln Memorial
@ (North Alabama: The Fighting Joe) Muscle Shoals, AL
|Friday, May. 25|
NCAA Division II National Finals
@ (North Alabama: The Fighting Joe) Muscle Shoals, AL
John VanDerLaan Named Finalist for Division II Jack Nicklaus National Player-of-the-Year Award for the Second Year in a Row
NORMAN, OK – For the second year in a row, John VanDerLaan has made the list of finalists for the Division II Jack Nicklaus National Player-of-the-Year Award. The senior from Southbury, Connecticut is currently the number one player in the Division II Golfstat rankings and will have one more opportunity to strengthen his case for the award at next week’s national championships.
WINTER HAVEN, FL – Florida Southern senior John Coultas has qualified for the 2018 US Open Sectionals after shooting a four-under-par 68 on Thursday at the Country Club of Winter Haven. That score was good for second in the qualifying tournament and made him one of four golfers moving on to the next round. There were over 8,500 golfers nationwide competing to be among the 500 who advance.
Men’s Golf Team Headed Back to National Finals as John VanDerLaan Goes Back-to-Back for Individual Region Crown
CONOVER, NC – One day after posting one of the lowest rounds they have ever had in an NCAA postseason tournament, the Florida Southern Moccasins went even lower, and one year after winning his first individual regional crown, senior John VanDerLaan added another. With the Moccasins posting a team score of 10-under-par 274, and VanDerLaan pulling away on the back nine to win by three strokes, Florida Southern finished the NCAA Division II South/Southeast Super Regional as runner-up and the defending national champions are headed back to the finals.
The Climb Continues as Moccasins Move up to Second on Day Two of NCAA South/Southeast Super Regional
CONOVER, NC – Just prior to the start of Tuesday morning’s second round of the NCAA Division II South/Southeast Super Regional, Florida Southern head coach Doug Gordin stated what he thought the Moccasins needed to do on the front nine of Rock Barn Golf Club in order to make their move. It was more than just a statement, or prediction of what might occur. It seemed more like an emphatic statement from a coach who knew exactly what his team was capable of doing. A minus-three at the turn would put the Mocs in good shape for the rest of the day, and not only did they meet those expectations after nine holes, they continued to exceed them the way all the way through 18, and will head into Wednesday’s final round tied for second place and just two shots from the lead.
Late Surge Pushes Florida Southern into Fifth Place After First Round of NCAA South/Southeast Super Regional
CONOVER, NC – There was much discussion early among the Florida Southern coaching staff about the pluses and minuses of opening the NCAA Division II South/Southeast Super Regional on the back nine of Rock Barn Golf Club rather than the front. The consensus seemed to be that it was better to start where they were with a favorable front nine coming later in the afternoon. What a difference it turned out to be and that difference sent the Moccasins soaring up the standings as the sun got lower.
The defending national champion Florida Southern men’s golf team is in North Carolina this week to take part in the NCAA Division II South/Southeast Super Regional at Rock Barn Country Club in Conover. Lenoir-Rhyne University is serving as host for the regional tournament that features ten teams from the South Region and ten from the Southeast along with eight individual qualifiers. The top seven teams and two best individuals not with one of those seven teams will advance to the NCAA Division II National Finals. Live stats can be found here or through NCAA.com.
John VanDerLaan Repeats as SSC Men’s Golfer-of-the-Year and Joins John Coultas as 4-Time All-SSC Selections
MELBOURNE, FL – For the third year in a row, the Sunshine State Conference Men’s Golfer-of-the-Year is a Moccasin, and for the second year in succession, that award goes to senior John VanDerLaan. Joining him as a First Team All-SSC selection is senior John Coultas, the 2016 SSC Men’s Golfer-of-the-Year. Both are on the All-SSC team for the fourth time in their respective careers.
Final Regular Season Men's Golf Poll: West Florida, Florida Southern & Nova Remain 1-2-3 Headed into NCAA Postseason Play
NORMAN, OK – Florida Southern remained in the number two position in the final regular season Bushnell Golfweek Division II Coaches Poll released on Friday, May 4. The University of West Florida remained at the top of the rankings, marking the sixth consecutive poll in which the Moccasins and Argonauts have been 1-2.
John Coultas and John VanDerLaan Again Named Semifinalists for Jack Nicklaus National Player-of-the-Year Award
NORMAN, OK – For the second year in a row, not one, but two Florida Southern Moccasins are among the 30 golfers named as semifinalists for the 2018 Division II Jack Nicklaus National Player-of-the-Year Award, which was announced Thursday, May 3 by the Golf Coaches Association of America. Making the list from Florida Southern were seniors John Coultas and John VanDerLaan, and nine of the 30 golfers were from the Sunshine State Conference.