BRISTOL, Tenn. – The 2012-13 season may have come to a disappointing end, but the King University men's golf team still had a successful campaign, winning two tournaments and finishing second in two others. King should be experienced this year, returning five golfers that appeared in at least 10 rounds a season ago, including three that competed in every event.
In the middle of the season last year, the Tornado finished in the top two in four of five tournaments, winning the Lincoln Memorial University State Farm Invitational and the Barton Intercollegiate. Head coach Brian Kamm also led the Tornado to second place finishes at the King Invitational and the Spring Kick-Off Intercollegiate. However, the success didn't continue at the Conference Carolinas Championship where the Tornado finished in eighth place, leaving room for improvement in 2013-14.
Kamm returns nearly everyone from last season's squad, but will have to replace NCAA Men's Golf Championship qualifier Richard Powell. Powell became the first King men's golfer to qualify for an NCAA Men's Golf Regional, and was named second team all-conference during his senior campaign.
King returns a very talented group, led by a quartet of juniors. Ross Maietta led this group with a stroke average of 74.79 while posting three top-10s a season ago. Taylor Gouge wasn't far behind with his 75.11 stroke average, also placing in the top-10 three times. Gouge also recorded two top-5s and won the King Invitational after shooting 68-69 in the two round event.
"We have four juniors coming back, and three of them had significant playing time, played every tournament for me last year," Kamm said. "I'm really looking forward to see who is going to step up, who is going to be the player to get better this year. When a player has a chance to be a leader, I think they look forward to doing that."
John Scott and Michael Chua return after successful 2012-13 seasons. Scott posted a stroke average of 75.47 to rank fourth on the team, and set the school record when he shot a 66 in the second round of the Richard Rendleman Invitational. Chua only appeared in six rounds a season ago and posted a stroke average of 83.33.
Leennawat Numpituckchaikul and Sam Hobday each appeared in 11 rounds as freshman a season ago, and will look to crack the lineup again this season. Numpituckchaikul posted a scoring average of 76.82 while Hobday averaged 78.91 strokes per round.
This returning core will be joined by a group of five freshmen that will also compete for time.
King tees off the 2013-14 campaign on September 9-10 at the Smoky Mountain Intercollegiate hosted by Carson-Newman University. The Tornado then host their annual event on September 30-October 1 at Bristol Country Club in Bristol, Tenn.