The leading men’s college golf team in the nation resides on Grounds.
Golfweek on Monday released its collegiate rankings and, for the first time in program history, the University of Virginia tops the list.
“It’s a great moment for our program,” UVA men’s golf coach Bowen Sargent said. “The team went out and performed well in the opening tournament, setting the school scoring record, so I’m happy for them. Now, the challenge is to continue to perform at a high level and demonstrate they deserve a recognition like this.
“This is a very talented group and they’re certainly capable.”
The Cavaliers, ranked No. 28 in the preseason Bushnell/Golfweek coaches poll, started 2022 with an eye-opening showing last week at the Streamsong Invitational in Bowling Green, Florida. In a 13-team field, UVA won the event by seven strokes. As a team, the Cavaliers finished the three-round tournament 56-under-par, the best score in school history.
After the strong performance, Sargent, appearing on the Wahoo Central Podcast hosted by VirginiaSports.com’s Jeff White, said “the sky is the limit” for his Wahoos.
“I think this team can go as far as we want to go,” he said. “Obviously, it takes a little luck along the way and everybody staying healthy and things like that – playing well at the right time – but I think this team can do pretty much anything it sets its mind to.”
Entering the season, UVA returned its top two players from last year – senior Pietro Bovari and junior George Duangmanee – and added a couple coveted freshmen in Ben James and Bryan Lee, headliners to the best recruiting class in program history.
James, the top-ranked junior player in the country coming out of Milford, Connecticut, was the best individual golfer at the Streamsong Invitational, firing a school-record 20-under-par, which ties as the third-best 54-hole total in known collegiate golf history.
Remember the name: Ben James.— Dan Rapaport (@Daniel_Rapaport) September 13, 2022
Was the top junior in the country last year. Lost a playoff to get into the US Open. Goes to Virginia. Shoots 28 in his first nine holes of college golf at Streamsong Blue. Currently -20, leading by 6, with 5 holes left to play in the tournament. pic.twitter.com/11v1WdsjlC
— AJGA (@AJGAGolf) September 13, 2022
James (No. 2), Bovari (No. 22) and Duangmanee (No. 66) are ranked among Golfweek’s top 70 college players in the country.
UVA men’s golf, now the 13th program in Virginia athletics history to earn a No. 1 team ranking, returns to action next Monday and Tuesday at the Inverness Collegiate at Inverness Club in Toledo, Ohio.