MUNCIE, Ind. -- Ball State accounted for more than half of the representatives on this year’s Academic All-Mid-American Conference Team for men’s golf, setting a program record with four selections.
Joe Gasser, Tony Lazzara, Tyler Merkel and Alex Stinson were voted to the seven-member squad by the league’s faculty athletics representatives. It is the third straight year Stinson has been named to the team and the second straight year for Merkel.
The four Academic All-MAC selections are the most ever by any league team under the current selection format. Teams have previously had three representatives on multiple occasions.
Additionally, Ball State’s McCormick Clouser and Brodie Williams earned honorable mention honors, meaning all six golfers who spent a significant portion of time in the Cardinals’ lineup were recognized.
Gasser, a senior elementary education major with a 3.254 GPA, was a second-team All-MAC selection this season. The Yorktown, Ind., product finished the year with a 74.36 stroke average and a pair of top-3 finishes at the Firestone Invitational and the Earl Yestingsmeier Invitational.
Lazzara graduated this spring with a 3.432 GPA in entrepreneurship. The Carmel, Ind., native managed a 75.78 stroke average during his senior season and posted five top-15 results. He tied for 14th at the MAC Championships and was Ball State’s top finisher at this week’s NCAA Championships.
Merkel, a junior from Evansville, Ind., owns a 3.867 GPA as a business administration major. A first-team All-MAC selection and a top-100 player in the country, Merkel led Ball State with a 72.91 stroke average. He posted six top-5 results, including his third career title at the Pinehurst Intercollegiate, second place at the Firestone Invitational and fourth at the MAC Championships.
Stinson, who graduated this spring with a 3.653 GPA in biology, joined Gasser on the All-MAC Second Team. The Anderson, Ind., product placed among the top 25 in nine of Ball State’s 11 stroke-play events, posting a 74.33 stroke average. He finished 11th at the MAC Championships and led the Cardinals with a tie for 16th place at the NCAA Regional in Pullman, Wash.
Clouser, a mid-year transfer from Michigan State, carries a 3.666 GPA in mathematics economics, while Williams owns a 3.212 in business administration.
The Academic All-MAC Team, which recognizes excellence is academics and athletics, is selected by a vote of the league’s faculty athletic representatives. In order to be nominated, student-athletes must have at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA and participate in at least 50 percent of their team’s contests.
Ball State finished off its season this week at the NCAA Championships outside Atlanta. The Cardinals won two tournaments on the year, finished runner-up in two others, earned a spot in the NCAA tournament for the first time since 1991 and advanced to the championship rounds for the first time since 1986.
2013 Honorable Mention
Cameron Simmons, Akron
McCormick Clouser, Ball State
Brodie Williams, Ball State
Joe Cooper, Bowling Green
Chris Melvin, Bowling Green
Austin Kelly, Miami
Mark MacDonald, Miami
Shawn Foley, Northern Illinois
Nick Schiavi, Northern Illinois
Brad Lucas, Ohio
Andrew Mlynarski, Ohio
Oliver Holtsberry, Toledo
Mike Lancaster, Toledo