The Wyoming Cowboy golf team will tee off its 2018-19 season this Friday-Sunday at the 50th Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational hosted by the U.S. Air Force Academy. The tournament was previously known as the Rocky Mountain Invitational and Pikes Peak Invitational, but since 2003 has been named after former Air Force golf coach Gene Miranda who coached the Falcons for 25 years and is a member of the Air Force Athletics Hall of Fame.
The tournament will be a 54-hole event, with one 18-hole round being played on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 7-9.
Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational Defending Champions
∙Wyoming is the defending team champion, finishing 1st in a field of 19 teams and shooting a 29-under par total of 835 in 2017
∙The Cowboys defeated second place Colorado State (-24, 840) by five strokes and third-place Colorado (-21, 843) by eight strokes
∙Cowboy John Murdock is also the defending individual champion. Murdock fired a 14-under par total of 202 at last year’s Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational
∙Golfstat.com and GoAirForceFalcons.com
∙Eisenhower Golf Club, Blue Course, U.S. Air Force Academy
∙7,511 yards, Par 72
∙Friday and Saturday, Sept. 7-8, 7:30-9:30 a.m., M.T.
∙Sunday, Sept. 9, 7:15-9:15 a.m., M.T.
∙Air Force, Abilene Christian, Colorado, Drake, Missouri State,
New Mexico State, Northern Colorado, Northern Iowa,
Southern Illinois-Edwardsville, Southern Utah, Texas State, UC Davis,
Utah State, Utah Valley State, Weber State, Wyoming
Personnel Picture: The 2018-19 Cowboy team has a lot of new faces, with only one senior, one junior, one sophomore, one redshirt freshman and four true freshmen.
∙Key Returners: John Murdock (Sr.), Dan Starzinski (Jr.),
Carl Underwood (So.)
∙Key Losses: 2018 Seniors Arron Lickteig, Drew McCullough,
Quintin Pope and Glenn Workman
∙Redshirt Freshman and True Freshmen: Jared Edeen (RFr.),
Liam Clancy (Fr.), Kirby Coe-Kirkham (Fr.), Jimmy Dales (Fr.),
Tyler Severin (Fr.)
Coach’s Corner: Quotes from University of Wyoming Director of Golf and Head Men’s Golf Coach Joe Jensen.Cowboy Golf
“Last year was a great year. We had three (tournament) wins and we were ranked No. 1 in the conference for a portion of the year,” said Jensen. “We felt like even up until the last nine holes at the conference championship, depending on our finish, that we had a chance to be in the conversation to go to (NCAA) regionals.
“You step away from that and it really was a nice year. We had four Academic All-Americans and good kids.
“Now this year, we have four new freshmen, and five freshmen total with Jared Edeen, who is a redshirt freshman, so I’ll need to be patient this year.
“We’ve had a good start to our year. Because of the Mick and Susie McMurry High Altitude Performance Center, we’re able to spend more time together as a team. We had a nice weekend of training last weekend at Old Baldy in Saratoga.
“Since school just started last Wednesday, I’m less than a week into really getting to know our new guys on a daily basis, but we leave Thursday to go to Air Force.
“I’m optimistic (about this first tournament), but I’m also realistic. We won last year (as a team), and John Murdock won the individual title. I’m not saying it’s correct for us to be driving down to Air Force with the idea that we are going to defend our championship, but I’m not saying we won’t. I feel like we have two really good players in John (Murdock) and Dan Starzinski. Both had good summers, but it’s kind of a unique blend on this team with those two experienced players with a lot of young players. And then Carl Underwood is kind of in the middle. He gained quite a bit of experience last year, but he doesn’t have the experience that John and Dan have.”