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Pioneers open season next week at King Invitational

Pioneers open season next week at King Invitational

GREENEVILLE, Tenn. --- The Tusculum University men's golf team will make the short trip to Bristol for the season-opening King University Invitational next week at the Golf Club of Bristol.

The Pioneers, led by first-year head coach Hunter Chandley, returns seven lettermen from last year's squad which captured three team tournament crowns and finished sixth at the South Atlantic Conference Championship.

The opening round of the King Tournament will begin Monday morning on the par-70, 6,483-yard layout. The Pioneers finished runner-up at last year's event.

Tusculum's top three scorers are gone, but sophomore Liam Hermansson returns after a fine rookie season. The Stockholm, Sweden native made nine appearances last year where he posted a 74.78 stroke average and logged three finishes in the top-20, including twice in the top-10. He tied for fifth place in his collegiate debut at last year's King even carding back-to-back rounds of 71 for a two-over total of 142. He also finished ninth at the Richard Rendleman Invitational and 13th at the Tusculum Invitational which included a season-low round of 69.

Senior Riley Brown carded a 75.00 stroke average after transferring in from Glendale Community College. In his inaugural TU campaign, he qualified for six events and which included three top-20 finishes including a runner-up showing at the State Farm Challenge with a seven-under par score of 68-69=137.  The Peoria, Arizona product earned NJCAA All-America first team honors at Glendale in 2021 where he posted a 73.6 average as the Gauchos finished third at the national championship.

Senior Thomas Kollberg (Wimborne, England) appeared in four tournaments last season as he accounted for a 75.1 scoring average. He tied for 11th at the Tusculum Invitational and ended the season with a 26th place showing at the SAC Championship. He previously played the 2020-21 season at Eastern Arizona College where he logged a 74.46 stroke average in five tournaments, which included four top-20 performances including a second place showing at the NJCAA Region Championship.

Isak Holter is back for his junior season. The product of Tronheim, Norway tallied a 75.58 stroke average in his five tournaments. He finished three times in the top-25 including sixth at the Walters State Fall Classic and a 13th-place showing at the TU Invitational. He has qualified for seven events in his two seasons in Greeneville.

Junior Blake Williams (Lone Tree, Colo.) returns as he recorded an eighth-place finish at the Tusculum Invitational with a one-under par total of 71-72=143.

Jordan Williams, a graduate student from Greeneville, posted an 80.0 scoring average last year which included a 30th place finish at the State Farm Intercollegiate. Williams has a 79.4 career average in his seven events, which includes a three top-30 performances.

Also returning for the Black & Orange are sophomores Liam Colohan (Surrey, England) and Daxx Carr (Johnson City, Tenn.).

This year's roster includes six newcomers to the Tusculum program including one junior college transfer and five freshmen.

Greeneville junior Hunter Hartman returns home after playing two seasons at Walters State Community College. The South Greene High School alum played in 15 tournaments for the Senators which included eight finishes in the top-25. He posted a 77.17 scoring average last season in his eight appearances including a 13th place outing at the NJCAA Southeast Regional as Walters State advanced to the JUCO nationals.

Lawson Harkey, a rookie from Crouse, North Carolina, was a four-time All-Conference selection at West Lincoln High School. He claimed medalist honors at the NCHSAA Regional and finished seventh at the State Championship. He also won 10 individual medals in a two-year span and led West Lincoln to a two District and two Region crowns.

Cole Haygood, a freshman from Ponce Inlet, Florida, was an All-County standout at Spruce Creek High School. He led his prep team to a district and region titles in 2020 and carded a low-round of 66.

Freshman Nicholas Taggart is coming off an outstanding senior campaign at Seven Lakes High School where he posted a 75.29 scoring average. The Katy, Texas product earned All-District first team accolades on two occasions and was also an All-Region performer.

Rounding out the roster are freshmen Elvis Steen (Allen, Texas / Allen HS) and David Zuska (Kounov, Czech Republic / Gymnázium Kladno).

Following this week's opening tournament at King, the Pioneers will travel to Salisbury, North Carolina for the Richard Rendleman Invitational (Oct. 3-4).






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