Western seeks third straight GNAC title
April 16, 2010
BELLINGHAM, Wash. - With the league's top three scoring leaders, Western Washington University is looking for a third straight title at the third annual Great Northwest Athletic Conference Men's Golf Championship slated for Monday and Tuesday (Apr. 19-20) at the Coeur d'Alene (Id.) Golf Resort Course.
Also competing are Montana State Billings, Northwest Nazarene and Saint Martin's. Two rounds are scheduled for Monday and one Tuesday with play beginning at 8 a.m. both days.
The Vikings, ranked No.16 nationally in the latest Golf World/NIKE/Golf Coaches Association of America NCAA Division II Top 25 and No.5 in the West Region, are paced by Xavier Dailly (Jr., Burlington/Burlington-Edison), who leads the GNAC with a 72.3 strokes per round average. Dailly has placed among the top 10 in six of Western's nine tournament appearances this season.
The Vikings' Nick Varelia (So., Kent/Kentwood) is second in GNAC scoring at 74.2, Julian Peters (Sr., Mukilteo/Kamiak) is third at 74.3 and Sam Ayotte (Jr., Corvallis, OR/Crescent City) is fifth at 74.9.
Peters is the only returning player from the first two league title-winning squads, placing seventh as a sophomore and 14th as a junior.
In each of the last two years at the GNAC Championships, Western has rallied from three-stroke, first-day deficits to win. The Vikings won by three shots in 2009 and were victorious by five strokes in 2008.
Overall, Western has won 26 conference titles and 46 league, district and regional championships, the most by any sport in school history.
The Vikings are looking to break out of a slump, placing 10th at the Cal State Stanislaus Invitational last week and ninth at the Grand Canyon Spring Invitational two weeks ago.
Western began its season last fall with four top four finishes, tying for the Grand Canyon Fall Invitational title, placing third at the Sonoma State and Saint Martin's tourneys and finishing fourth at its own WWU Invitational.
The Vikings opened the spring portion of their schedule by placing third at the Cal State Bakersfield Invitational, but then finished seventh at the Cal State San Bernardino tourney and fifth at the Notre Dame de Namur tourney before struggling even more over the last two weeks.
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