MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State men's golf team will compete in its first full-field tournament of the 2014-15 season this weekend in Sugar Grove, Ill.
The Cardinals are set to play in the Northern Intercollegiate for the fourth straight year at Rich Harvest Farms. The 54-hole event begins Friday and runs through Sunday with live scoring available at birdiefire.com.
Ball State will send a lineup to Rich Harvest that is a combination of youth and experience. Senior McCormick Clouser and junior James Blackwell were both in the lineup for the team's sixth-place finish at last year's Northern Intercollegiate, while senior Zach Yinger played in six events a year ago.
Clouser led the Cardinals in 2013-14 with a 75.00 scoring average, and he and Keegan McKinney were named to the All-MAC Second Team. Ball State will be without McKinney this season as he redshirts because of injury.
Two freshmen -- Michael Makris and Johnny Watts -- earned spots in the lineup this weekend with Makris finishing second in the team's preseason qualifying. Both players gained a measure of experience last weekend in a tri-meet at Notre Dame.
In addition to Ball State and tournament host Northern Illinois, the field at Rich Harvest includes Houston, Indiana, Lamar, Louisville, Marquette, Ohio State, North Texas, Purdue, UCF, Virginia and Winthrop. Five of those teams finished last season ranked among the top 50 in the country: UCF (6), Houston (9), Virginia (16), Purdue (45) and Louisville (50).
Ball State is paired with Ohio State and Marquette for Friday's opening round with the Cardinals' first tee time at 8:31 a.m. CT (9:31 ET).
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