Ernst Selected To U.S. Palmer Cup Team
April 25, 2012
LAS VEGAS (UNLVRebels.com) - UNLV men's golf senior Derek Ernst has been selected to play on the United States team for the 2012 Palmer Cup, which will be played at The Royal County Down Golf Club in Newcastle, Northern Ireland. The annual Ryder Cup-style competition will be played June 28-30.
Ernst leads the Mountain West in scoring average (70.78 over 27 rounds) and has five top-five finishes in nine total events this year for the Rebels, including an individual title in his most recent outing - the ASU Thunderbird Invitational.
Currently ranked ninth in the country among all NCAA Division I men's golfers by Golfstat, Ernst has turned in 15 rounds under par this season.
"We are very proud of Derek's selection to the U.S. team for one of the most prestigious events in college golf," UNLV head coach Dwaine Knight said. "There is truly no greater honor than to have the chance to represent one's country in athletic competition. UNLV has a rich history playing and coaching in the Palmer Cup and Derek is another outstanding representative for us."
Other golfers on the U.S. team include Blayne Barber of Auburn, Clemson's Corbin Mills, Patrick Rodgers and Andrew Yun of Stanford, Alabama's Justin Thomas, James White of Georgia Tech and Washington's Chris Williams. The U.S. team will be coached by Josh Gregory of SMU, while Georgia Tech's Christian Newton will serve as his assistant.
The Americans won last year's event, which was held at The Stanwich Club in Greenwich, Conn. Overall, the United States leads the Palmer Cup series 8-6-1 and has won two straight.
The Palmer Cup is an annual eight-man team golf competition between American and European college golfers and is named after Arnold Palmer. From 1997 to 2002 the U.S. played Great Britain and Ireland rather than the whole of Europe. The current format is four ball with four groups in the morning matches and singles with eight groups in the afternoon.
Ernst will be the seventh person from UNLV to participate in a Palmer Cup. Coach Knight was the U.S.'s captain (head coach) during the inaugural competition in 1997. Ted Oh played on the team in 1997, Jeremy Anderson played in 1998 and 1999, Scott Lander was on the squad in 2001, Ryan Moore played in 2003 and 2004, and former assistant coach Andy Bischel was the U.S.'s assistant coach in 2008.
The UNLV men's golf team, ranked fourth in the nation by Golfstat, will be back in action on Friday-Saturday, April 27-28, in Provo, Utah, at the PING Cougar Classic.