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Left to right: Tyler Merkel, Joe Gasser and Alex Stinson.
Photo by: Ball State Athletics
Merkel, Gasser, Stinson Named All-MAC for Menís Golf

NASHPORT, Ohio -- Three Ball State men’s golfers earned All-Mid-American Conference recognition after Sunday’s final round at the MAC Championship.

Junior Tyler Merkel was named first-team all-conference for the second year in a row, while seniors Joe Gasser and Alex Stinson each picked up second-team honors. The three all-conference selections are the most for Ball State in 31 years.

Merkel finished fourth at the MAC Championship for his sixth top-5 result in Ball State’s nine stroke-play events. The Evansville, Ind., product won this year’s Pinehurst Intercollegiate and finished second at the Firestone Invitational, helping Ball State to team titles at both tournaments.

A two-time MAC Golfer of the Week this season who ranks among the top 100 players nationally, Merkel owns a stroke average of 72.96. He is a three-time all-conference performer, having been named to the second team as a freshman in addition to his first-team honors the past two years.

Gasser owns a 74.70 stroke average for the season with three top-10 finishes and two top-3 results in the Cardinals’ nine stroke-play events. The Yorktown, Ind., product posted his best career finish by tying for second at the Earl Yestingsmeier Invitational during the fall season. That came on the heels of a third-place finish a week earlier at the Firestone Invitational.

Stinson posted his eighth top-25 finish of the season by tying for 11th at the MAC Championship. He owns a 74.89 stroke average during what has been a steady season campaign. Stinson, a product of Anderson, Ind., posted his best result of the season with a tie for fifth at the Earl Yestingsmeier Invitational and also managed an unbeaten record at the Mid-American Match Play.

The last time Ball State had at least three golfers named all-conference was 1982 when the Cardinals had a school-record four selections.

Ball State has won two tournaments as a team this year and finished second in two others. The Cardinals are coming off a third-place finish at the MAC Championship at Longaberger Golf Club.

Ranked No. 58 in the latest Golfstat rankings, Ball State is awaiting word on a potential NCAA Regional at-large berth. The NCAA selection show will be streamed live on Monday at 9 p.m. with a total of 81 teams to be placed among six regional sites.

All-MAC First Team
Charlie Bull, Jr., Akron
Corey Conners, Jr., Kent State
Tyler Merkel, Jr., Ball State
Taylor Pendrith, Jr., Kent State
Chris Selfridge, So., Toledo

All-MAC Second Team
Otto Black, Fr., Toledo
Joe Gasser, Sr., Ball State
Wes Gates, Sr., Bowling Green
Kyle Kmiecik, Jr., Kent State
Kevin Miller, Sr., Kent State
Alex Stinson, Sr., Ball State

MAC Golfer of the Year
Taylor Pendrith, Jr., Kent State

Kermit Blosser MAC Coach of the Year
Herb Page, Kent State

MAC Freshman of the Year
Otto Black, Fr., Toledo

Earl Yestingsmeier MAC Sportsmanship Award
Cameron Simmons, Sr., Akron

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