Rider Heads to MAAC Championships
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla.—The Rider University golf team heads to Florida April 25-27, competing in the 2014 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference golf championships.
Operated by Arnold Palmer Golf Management, Disney's Palm Golf Course is rated four stars by Golf Digest and includes nine water hazards and 94 bunkers as part of a par 72, 7,011 yard course.
“Our season has been really solid,” said Rider head coach Jason Barry. “I’ve seen a lot of improvement in everyone’s game. Everyone has been really hungry to get better. The team gets along and they are also extremely competitive.”
In 2013, Rider finished seventh of nine teams with a score of 952, after rounds of 327, 314 and 311.
“I expect the team to continue to be strong technically,” Barry said. “We want to put ourselves in good positions and eliminate some mistakes like three putts and giving strokes away. If we clean up the small mistakes, we have a really good chance to be successful, both individually and as a team.”
Senior James Buttermark (Staten Island, N.Y/Monsignor Farrell) is averaging 74.8 in his eight rounds this spring with a 17th place finish at the Towson Invite and a 21st place finish at the Princeton Invitational.
“James has been a great leader and awesome captain,” Barry said. “I can’t ask for anything more. He wants to win so badly and he is really all about the team aspect. He hits some unbelievable shots and his consistency as a ball striker, he is a polished player.”
As a junior at MAACs, Buttermark finished tied for 28th with a total of 239 after rounds of 83-81-75. As a sophomore, Buttermark was 22nd at the MAAC Championships (231) after earning All-MAAC honors with a seventh place finish (230) as a Rider rookie.
Junior Luke Liddell (Philadelphia, Pa./Father Judge) is averaging 77.5 in his eight rounds this spring.
“Luke is an explosive, powerful player,” Barry said. “He is hungry to get better and improve his game. He always finds a way to grind his round out and he fights and never quits.”
Liddell was 25th at MAACs with a 237 after rounds of 81-79-77 as a sophomore. As a Rider rookie, Liddell was 42nd after a three-round total of 258 at the 2012 MAAC Championships. Liddell shot 85 on the final day after opening with rounds of 80 and 93.
Simone is averaging 77.9 this spring and has a 24th place finish at the Lafayette Invitational to his credit.
“Aaron is one of the few people that may love the game as much as I do,” Barry said. “If it never got dark out, he would be at the course 24/7. He works very hard, is physically gifted and I think the sky is the limit for him.”
Yarson is averaging 77.5 in his eight rounds in 2014, and Hughes has shot five rounds and is averaging 78.5 this spring, including a round of 72 that placed him third at the Peacock Invitational.
“Tom is solid and hits the ball well,” said Barry. “You can’t tell how is playing by watching him and that’s a good attribute to have. He grinds things out and fights for every last stroke.”
At MAACs in 2012, Rider finished eighth of nine teams with a team score of 953 after rounds of 314-316-323.
In 2011, Rider was eighth of nine teams with a three-round total of 977 (328-326-323).
In 2010, Rider was third (302-312-300) with a score of 914 and in 2009, the Broncs were sixth (941) after rounds of 304, 319 and 318.
In 2008, Rider was the runner-up with scores of 303-295-295, for a total of 893 and the Broncs were fifth in 2007 (921) with rounds of 306, 301 and 326.
Once again, highlights of the tournament will be posted on MAAC.TV and seen on ESPN3.