Golf wins two major NEC awards


Rachel Root

MOON TOWNSHIP– After winning the NEC Championship in Daytona Beach, Florida, the Robert Morris golf team had two members winning major awards for the conference.

Junior Max Palmer took home the NEC Golfer of the Year, while head coach Jerry Stone won NEC Coach of the Year. Palmer marks the third player in Colonials history to win the award, joining C.G. Mercatoris in 2011 and Ryan Prokay 2015. Stone’s Coach of the Year award is the fifth of his career, and fourth with the men’s team (2002-03, 2009-10, 2014-15).

Palmer was also named to the All-NEC First Team, joined by fellow junior Kyle Grube. This season, Palmer had one of the best years in Colonials history. He holds the second-lowest stroke average in program history at 73.4; C.G. Mercatoris holds the lowest with a 72.8 average shot during the 2010-11 season. The Novi, Michigan native also added seven top-10 finishes this year, including five top-five performances.

Before winning Golfer of the Year, Palmer won the NEC Rookie of the Year and was named to the All-NEC Second Team in 2017. Last year, Palmer was the first sophomore in program history to be named to the All-NEC First Team. Palmer ranks third all-time in both top 10 finishes with 15; and rounds at or below par, also with 15.

As for Coach Stone, he has been the coach of Robert Morris since 2001, and the team has finished top three at the NEC Championships on nine occasions (winning in 2015 and 2019); and collected a total of 22 tournament victories, including three this year (NKU Fall Collegiate Classic, Abarta Coca-Cola Collegiate Invitational, and NEC Championships).

The team will look to build upon this momentum as they make their second NCAA Championships appearance next week at the Myrtle Beach Regional. The Colonials round will start Monday, May 13; kicking off a three-day, 54-hole tournament at the beautiful TPC Myrtle Beach.

Other schools headed to Myrtle Beach include the no. 4 ranked Wake Forest Demon Deacons, the no. 8 ranked California Golden Bears, the Texas Tech Red Raiders, the University of Illinois Fighting Illini and the Florida State Seminoles. Also competing are the University of Nevada-Las Vegas (UNLV) Rebels, the Oregon Ducks, the Ohio State Buckeyes, the Northwestern Wildcats, the Oregon State Beavers, the Cal State Fullerton Titans, the Middle Tennesee Blue Raiders and the Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Rams.