What You Need to Know:
* Georgia State will make its seventh appearance in the 3M Augusta Invitational beginning on Saturday.
* For the second time this week, the Panthers will face a tough field. The 54-hole event will include six teams in the Top 50, including four Top 25 programs.
* This will mark the final regular season event for the Panthers before beginning postseason play with the Sun Belt Championship in late April.
ATLANTA – As Masters Week quickly approaches, Georgia State will travel out I-20 beginning on Saturday for the 3M Augusta Invitational at Forest Hills Golf Club. The Panthers will be returning to the event after a four-year hiatus.
Georgia State had a successful six-year run in the event that ended in 2012. Annually bringing together one of the best fields in college golf, the Panthers finished as high as third in 2007.
The Panthers are coming off a fifth place finish at The Hootie at Bulls Bay on Tuesday where Georgia State finished ahead of six teams ranked in the top 50 in the latest GolfStat rankings.
This week’s field will be will be nearly as difficult, including six teams in the Top 50, four of which are in the Top 25.
“Before the year started, we built our schedule to be tough at the end to prepare us for NCAA Regional play,” head coach Joe Inman said. “We wanted to be playing our best golf at the end of the year and I think we are getting close. We are now challenging ourselves against some of the best teams in the country. Hopefully it will lead us back to the NCAA Championship in May.”
This week’s field will include No. 50 Augusta, UAB, Army, UCF, No. 20 Georgia, No. 48 Houston, No. 11 Illinois, Mercer, New Mexico, No. 14 Oklahoma, No. 60 Tennessee, USC Aiken, Virginia Tech and No. 10 Wake Forest.
Inman will utilize the same line-up for the fifth-straight time this spring. It will include senior Nathan Mallonee, juniors Alex Herrmann and Max Herrmann, along with sophomores Nick Budd and Nathan Williams.
Alex Herrmann leads the Panthers with a 71.78 scoring average and a pair of top 10 finishes this season. Senior Nathan Mallonee is coming on strong as he finishes up his career. His 72.07 scoring average is second on the team, while his five top 25 performances are the most on the squad. He is coming off a ninth place finish at The Hootie.
Live scoring can be found throughout the tournament at GolfStat. Georgia State will arrive in Augusta on Friday for a practice round. The teams will utilize a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday and play 36 holes. The Panthers will be paired with Tennessee and Virginia Tech for the opening day. The final round is scheduled for Sunday with tee times beginning at 8:30 a.m.
The 3M Augusta Invitational marks the 39th edition of the tournament and the 36th at Forest Hills Golf Club. Founded in the rich tradition of golf in Augusta, Ga., the 3M Augusta Invitational has steadily grown since its beginning in 1979 and is widely recognized as one of the finest intercollegiate golf tournaments in the nation.
Some of the best golf teams in the country have competed in the event's 38 years of history, featuring several touring pros such as Davis Love III, Phil Mickelson (1989), Brad Faxon, Justin Leonard (1992), Vaughn Taylor (1998), Oliver Wilson (2001, 2003), Chris Kirk (2005), Scott Brown (2006), Dustin Johnson (2007), Henrik Norlander (2010), Jordan Spieth, Patrick Reed, Beau Hossler (2016), to name a few.
Following the event, Georgia State will return to the course April 23-25 for the Sun Belt Conference Championship in Destin, Fla., looking to win the eighth-conference championship in program history.