The Desert Awaits the Broncos

What’s Happening - The Boise State University men’s golf team will journey to Las Vegas, Nev., to compete in the Shoot-out in Angel Park, Sept. 29-30.


The tournament will be held at the Angel Park Golf Club and will feature 36 holes during the first day of competition beginning with a shotgun start at 7:30 a.m., followed by the final 18 holes, Sunday, also in the shotgun start format beginning at 8:00 a.m.


The Field The tournament will feature 14 teams including Boise State, Air Force, UC Riverside, Cal State-Bakersfield, Cal State-Northridge, George Mason, Gonzaga, Jacksonville, Louisiana Tech, San Jose State, Southern Utah, UTEP, Utah Valley, and Western Kentucky.


The Team - The Boise State University men’s golf team overcame a six stroke deficit in the final round of the Purple and Red Invitational to capture the team title in the 18-team field with a 9-under 567.


“This was great win for our team,” said head coach Kevin Burton. “To be able to overcome a six stroke deficit against the home team, (Utah) on their course speaks of the quality of this win.”


This win also marks the first time Boise State has captured the team and individual title in the same tournament since the 2002 Bronco Round-up (Graham DeLaet). This is the golf team’s third tournament win under the guidance of coach Burton after going nearly five years without a team title prior to his arrival.


The Players - Boise State returns all its starters to a team that finished third at the 2006 WAC Championships. The team will be led by seniors Matt Hastings and Troy Merritt. Joining the veterans at the tournament will be Kevin Tarango, Shawn Tonkin and John Baranco.


Merritt now has three tournament titles under his belt after winning the Purple and Red Invitational, Sept. 25, by three strokes. Merritt captured his second consecutive tournament title by firing a 10-under 134, to set a school-record for a low two-round score. This is also the fifth consecutive round under par for Merritt during which time he is averaging 67.6 strokes per round. He moved into a tie for fourth place on the Broncos’ all-time list for top 10 finishes in a career with eight. Merritt earned his second career individual title Sept. 18, at the Giustina Memorial Classic at Corvallis, Ore. Merritt’s talent and skill was on display throughout the tournament as he registered 14 birdies en route to posting a 214 (-16) for the tournament. Merritt was also a first-team All-WAC selection in 2006. He placed himself throughout the Boise State record book in his first season with the team. Merritt ranks third in season scoring average at 71.9 strokes per round, set the Boise State single round conference championship score with a 66 (-6) and tied for the low round in Bronco history with a 62 (-9) at the District VII Shootout. Merritt also captured the individual title at the Ron Moore Invitational for his first career victory Mar. 20, 2006.


Hastings is a three-year starter for Boise State holds a career scoring average of 73.6 and is tied for seventh on the Bronco’s list of career top 25 finishes with 15. He aided the Broncos to the team title at the Purple and Red Invitational with his 1-under 143. His 70 (-2) in the second round was a season-low round for him and helped the Broncos make up the six stroke deficit from day one. Las season at the Purple and Red Inviational he posted his career low round with a 67 (-5) in the final round. Hastings is also tied for seventh on the Bronco’s all-time list for career top 10 finishes with 6.


Baranco appeared in only five tournaments for Boise State last season but that did not deter him from making a name for himself. He posted three top 25 finishes for the Broncos in the five tournaments including a seventh place finish at the WAC Championships. Baranco also qualified for the Boise State record books as he averaged 72.9 strokes per round to tie for fifth in season scoring average. This season he shot a 2-under 70, in the final round of the Purple and Red Invite as Boise State overcame the six stroke deficit.


Tonkin played in ten tournaments during the 2006-07 season for Boise State. He posted a career-low 69 (-2) at the 2006 District VII Shootout where he also recorded his career-best finish (T24th).


Tarango will be making his first career appearance for the Broncos after transferring from Fresno City College.

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