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Illinois Men's Golf Season Concludes in Final Four

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Coach Mike Small and the Fighting Illini continue to build the program into a national powerhouse with a blue-collar mentality in a white collar sport

Illinois Men's Golf Twitter

What a day it was for Illinois Men's Golf yesterday.  The Illini started the day seeded as the top overall team coming out of the stroke play rounds, and faced a tough quarterfinal match against the UCLA Bruins.  Illinois started slow, trailing in all five of their matches early in the round.  But resilient play from Thomas Detry, Charlie Danielson, and Big Ten Freshman of the Year Nick Hardy produced a 3-2 comeback victory for the orange and blue.  In fact, Hardy poured in this 8 foot putt on the final hole to clinch the match for Illinois:

Once the pairings were set for the afternoon semifinal matchs between the Illinois Fighting Illini and the USC Trojans, the teams set out on a rain-soaked course to earn a place in the championship the next day.  Illinois started strong, controlling the lead in three of their matches early in the round.  However, USC would not give up and would eventually tie the matches heading into the final holes.  In the end, the Trojans would surge to a 3-2 victory over Illinois and advance to the championship matches against the LSU Tigers.

For Illinois, this season was one of the best in program history.  The team finishes the year ranked #3 in the nation with 9 victories including their 6th Big Ten Championship in 7 years, and their 3rd consecutive victory in their NCAA Regional.  This consistent play and winning tradition was lead by the play of Senior Brian Campbell.

Campbell's career at Illinois concludes with 17 Top-10 finishes, 1 tournament win (Wolf Run Intercollegiate in 2014), and Back to Back NCAA Regional Wins in 2014 and 2015.  As the only senior on the team, his leadership and tenacity to help continue to grow the program into a national powerhouse will always be cherished and appreciated.

Juniors Charlie Danielson and "Belgian Bomber" Thomas Detry continued their solid play at Illinois, and will be key leaders next season with 4 of 5 starters returning to the program.  Danielson finished the year with 6 Top-10 finishes this season, and a win in the Boilermaker Invitational.  Detry was red-hot this season, with victories in the Boilermaker Invitation, Louisiana Classic, AND Sagamore Fall Preview...along with 5 Top-10 finishes this season.

The young guns on the team also found success, as Nick Hardy and Dylan Meyer both provided HUGE support despite their lack of collegiate experience.  Hardy finished the year with a win in the Big Ten Championship and 1 Top-10 finish to his name, and Meyer was victorious at the Illini Invitational and grabbed 2 Top-10 finishes this season.
With that much success coming from the freshman class and new talent joining the program next season, Illinois Coach Mike Small will surely have his team ready next year to claim a 7th Big Ten Title in 8 years.  Not to mention, another deep run in the NCAA's.

GREAT season guys! Go Illini!