Top Three Transitional Moments: Men’s & Women’s Golf

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SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Four years ago, USC Upstate began a journey to join the NCAA Division I ranks and pending approval by the NCAA Board of Governors, Upstate will become an active member of D-I on Sept. 1, 2011.  With the transitional phase nearly complete, the media relations office takes a look back at some of the top moments of the transitional phase, today's spotlight, men's and women's golf.

On July 1, the top 10 moments of the transition were compiled into an online web poll and thanks to the votes of Spartan fans, the final tally is in.  Without any further ado, here are the top three moments of the transitional phase for Upstate golf.

 

Moment No. 3

Lewis Shatters School Record with 69 in Great Smokies Intercollegiate

October 10, 2010

With just one collegiate tournament under her belt, USC Upstate freshman women's golfer Rachel Lewis opened the Great Smokies Intercollegiate with a school record 69 to shatter the old mark and place her in a tie atop the leaderboard.

Lewis, who was a freshman in 2010-11 and who hails from Llanishen, Wales, was simply outstanding in the opening round of the tournament. She shot 2-under on the front nine and 1-under on the back to shoot 3-under 69 for the round. By the end of the day, she stood tied atop the leaderboard.

Lewis' 69 shattered the old school record of 72 which was held by former Upstate standouts Richelle Wedzik, Julie Miller, Audrey Church and Cheryl Lo.

It should be no shock that Lewis put her name atop the record books early in her career. The Welsh Girls' Champion came to Upstate with plenty of talent. She led the Spartans on the course throughout the season, finishing as the low Spartan in seven of the 12 tournaments on the She also led the way with an 80.8 stroke average despite playing the majority of the season with a nagging knee injury. She topped the Spartans with two top 10 individuals finishes on the year.

 

Moment No. 2

Upstate Wins Rutgers Invitational in First Tournament Playing on D-I Level

October 10, 2010

Three months removed from finishing second at the 2007 NCAA Division II National Championship, the USC Upstate men's golf team announced its presence on the Division I level when it claimed the team and individual championship at the Rutgers Invitational in the program's first tournament playing on the Division I level.

Head coach Todd Lawton took his group of Spartans to Piscataway, N.J., to face 17 other teams in the Rutgers Invitational, facing the likes of Notre Dame, Seton Hall, Villanova and Rutgers. By the end of the 54-hole tournament, the Spartans not only won the championship with a 3-over-par total, but claimed a dominating 15-stroke victory over Notre Dame out of the Big East.

Michael Lawrence (Easley, S.C.) also put his name into the Upstate record books, becoming the first Spartan to win an individual championship on the Division I level. Lawrence posted a 4-under total, finishing with rounds of 69, 68 and 72 to win the tournament by three strokes over teammate Josh Gallman (Gaffney, S.C.). Tyler Tucker (Gray Court, S.C.) finished tied for sixth, while Baxter Culler (Hartsville, S.C.) and Jamie Lightsey (Fort Mill, S.C.) each finished tied for 18th to place five Spartans in the top 20.

Upstate opened the tournament with a 4-under 280 to take a five-stroke lead over Notre Dame to open the tournament. The Spartans kept up the pressure with an even-par round of 284 in the second to extend its lead to 15 strokes. A 291 in the final round was the lowest round of the day, tied with Notre Dame, and good enough to keep the Fighting Irish at bay by 15 strokes.

 

Moment No. 1

Gallman Closes Out Stellar Career at Upstate

April 25, 2010

One of the top student-athletes in the history of the athletics program, Upstate men's golfer Josh Gallman closed out his standout career by winning the Fossum Invitational at Michigan State.

Gallman (Gaffney, S.C.), who burst onto the scene by finishing third at the 2007 NCAA Division II national Championships, led Upstate in establishing the program on the Division I level. He earned three A-Sun All-Conference honors, taking home first team accolades in 2008 and 2010 and second team honors in 2009. He finished his career with seven individual tournament titles, winning four in Upstate's first year playing on the Division I level in 2007-08 and three as a senior in 2009-10. In addition to his three tournament wins as a senior, he finished third at the A-Sun Championships.

Gallman owns every major school record and became the first Upstate golfer, male or female, to reach the top 100 in the world golf amateur rankings, climbing as high as No. 66 in the R&A world golf rankings.

A standout on the course, he was also a standout in the classroom and became a highly-decorated individual. He was a two-time Cleveland Golf/Srixon All-America Scholar and was an ESPN the Magazine/CoSIDA Third-Team Academic All-American in 2010. He became the first student-athlete in the history of the athletic department to earn two Student-Athlete of the Year awards, winning the honors as a sophomore in 2007-08 and as a senior in 2009-10. He was inducted into the Chi Alpha Sigma National Student-Athlete Honor Society, the Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Fraternity in the Johnson College of Business and earned the Top Business Marketing Student Award.

 

The media relations office will continue to release the top three moments from each sport leading up to the first athletic competition of the 2011-12 academic year, a women's soccer exhibition match against Spartanburg Methodist College on Aug. 16 at 6 p.m.

 

Baseball

Men's Basketball

Women's Basketball

Men's & Women's Cross Country

Men's & Women's Golf

Men's Soccer (Aug. 9)

Women's Soccer (Aug. 10)

Softball (Aug. 11)

Men's & Women's Tennis (Aug. 12)

Men's & Women's Track and Field (Aug. 15)

Volleyball (Aug. 16)