Disc golfers land two flights in top 10 at NC State qualifier
February 24, 2019 | Raleigh, N.C.
Liberty University's disc golf team placed its championship and first flight men's foursomes in the top 10 out of 19 teams in the advanced division at the North Carolina State Wolfpack Qualifier over the weekend of Feb. 23-24.
The Flames' championship flight quartet of seniors Hunter Thomas (1-under-par) and Ryan Shumate (1-over) and sophomores Trevor Staub (1-over) and Pete Curran totaled a 3-under 343 through five rounds of singles and doubles play to tie for third with Virginia Tech. They finished behind only NC State's A team (336) and Georgia Southern (341).
Liberty's first flight, led by freshman Evan Bamford (4-over), finished in a three-way tie for seventh place at 364 with Clemson's A team and NC State's B squad.
"We got lots of practice playing in the rain," Flames Assistant Coach Devin Swartz said. "Hopefully, we don't have it at nationals, but if we do, it was good experience."
Liberty will send two men's teams — its championship flight team of Staub, Thomas, Shumate, and Curran and first flight of freshmen Dustin Barrett, Nick Thayer, and Bamford, and graduate Jeremy Miekley — and two women (freshmen Shannon Hons and Olivia Hayes) to this weekend's Clemson (S.C.) Tiger Town Throwdown, another qualifier for the March 27-30 National Collegiate Disc Golf (NCDG) Championships in North Augusta, S.C..
Liberty has already qualified for nationals based on its top women's foursome capturing the program's first championship flight national title at last year's tournament.
Senior Hannah Trotz is the lone returning player from that team and will be paired with freshman Grace Adkins at nationals in a new format for the women's tournament that will feature one round of singles play and four rounds of doubles. Two other Lady Flames tandems will be senior Hannah Frey and Hons and freshmen Mackenzie Patrick and Hayes.
"They're trying to get more teams and balance it out to make it a little more challenging," Liberty Head Coach Steve Bowman said.
Graduate Zach Biscardi, senior Christian Wilborn, Bamford, and Miekley will form Liberty's first flight men's foursome at nationals. Barrett, Thayer, freshman Mike Fowler, and junior Taylor Nicol will form one second flight with freshmen Caleb Pearn, Konnor Kennedy, Nate Carroll, and Tim Dushaw composing a second.