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Golf Season Opens with Rutgers Invitational this Weekend

Sept. 15, 2005

VILLANOVA, Pa. - The Villanova University golf team will kick off its fall schedule this weekend at the Rutgers Invitational. The Wildcats will play against 11 other teams in the tournament, which is being held Friday and Saturday at the Rutgers Golf Course.

Villanova is coming off one of the most successful seasons in the past several years in 2004-05. The Wildcats participated in the spring Big East Tournament for the first time since the event was reduced to six teams, and won two tournaments during the season.

The lineup for this weekend will include returnees Jonathan Hewett (Sioux Falls, S.D.) and Brock Bergman (Pittsburgh, Pa.). Hewett, a senior captain, is the team's top returning player after posting a career-best 76.14 stroke average in 21 rounds last season. He was the medalist out of 130 golfers at the George Washington Invitational and posted a total of five top-10 finishes for the season. Bergman, meanwhile, was the only Wildcat to play in all 12 tournaments and 23 team rounds last season. He owned a 76.87 stroke average, and all but two of his scores fell in a range between 73 and 79. Bergman had at least a share of the team's low score in each of the final four tournaments of the season.

The other players in the Wildcats lineup this weekend will all be newcomers, led by junior Steve Arnold (Langhorne, Pa.). Arnold transferred to Villanova from East Tennessee State, where he was a member of the Southern Conference champion Bucs for the past two seasons. Arnold compiled a 78.47 stroke average in 23 rounds last season, including a low round of 71. He owns a pair of tournament titles in the amateur circuit (2004 Wolcott Amateur, 2005 Trenton District Amateur) and was also the champion at the Yardley Club.

Rounding out the lineup at Rutgers are freshmen Andrew Alexander (Rochester, Minn.) and Doug Stadler (Wexford, Pa.). Alexander was a three-time all-state selection and his team's MVP at Rochester Lourdes High School, and was a Class A state champion. Stadler, a product of North Catholic High School, played against current Wildcat teammates Henry Watson, Brock Bergman and Brett Bergman during his high school career.

The par-71 Rutgers Golf Course is located on campus in Piscataway, N.J. The course measures 6,337 yards from the back tees, featuring five par-3 holes and four par-5 challenges. The tournament will be contested with 36 holes played on Friday and the final 18 holes on Saturday. In addition to the host Scarlet Knights and the Wildcats, the Big East will be represented by Cincinnati, Connecticut, Seton Hall and St. John's. The remaining teams in the field are Binghamton, Columbia, Delaware, Longwood, Monmouth and Temple. Villanova carded team rounds of 297 and 306 at the Rutgers Invitational last season.

Results from this weekend's tournament will be available as quickly as possible following the conclusion of play each day. For more information on the Villanova golf team, please contact David Berman in the Media Relations Office at 610-519-4122 or through e-mail at