Ferris State Golf Program To Be Well-Represented In 2019 Michigan Open

Golf Tryout

Big Rapids, Mich. - A prestigious group of former Ferris State University men's golf standouts are among the participants for the 102nd Michigan Open Championships, which takes place June 10-13 at the Grand Traverse Resort near Traverse City.

The Michigan Open, one of the state's longest-running golf events, began in 1916 and was first won by Leo Diegel, who also played in the inaugural Ryder Cup matches and The Masters. This year's edition will take place at The Bear Golf Course in Williamsburg with action beginning Monday and running thru Thursday.

Several prominent Ferris State men's golf alumni from recent years are slated to compete in the event, including former graduates Eric Lilleboe (2010), Kyle Wittenbach (2012), Ben Cook (2017), Jack Weller (2019) and Andrew Hammett (2019) along with current golfers Thomas Hursey (2022), Daniel Shattuck (2022) and Tanner Moore (2024). Also in the field will be six-time Michigan Open Champion and 1993 graduate Scott Hebert.

"This is a substantial representation for a college program and we're looking forward to competing at a high level and representing the Bulldogs," said Wittenbach, who now serves as FSU's head men's and women's golf coach.

Historically, some of golf's most famous names are listed on the Michigan Open's James D. Standish, Jr. Trophy. Walter Hagen, the father of modern professional golf and captain of the first five U. S. Ryder Cup teams, won the event in 1921. Michigan PGA Professional and Ferris State alum Scott Hebert is tied with Al Watrous for all-time Michigan Open titles with six. Legendary Michigan amateur, Chuck Kocsis, who played on three Walker Cup teams, won three titles.

The event features 72 holes of stroke play with a starting field consisting of 156 exempt and qualified contestants. The field will be cut to the low 70 and ties after second round play with those 70 golfers and ties contituting the field for the remaining 36 holes. A tie for first place will be decided by a sudden death playoff immediately following the completion of the final round.

This past season, under Wittenbach's direction, Weller and Hammett helped lead the Bulldogs to the NCAA Division II National Championships. It marked the 17th consecutive year in which the Bulldogs had representation in the NCAA Tournament. The 17-year streak of NCAA Championship representation in men's golf ranks as one of the longest active stretches in the country.

Meanwhile, Cook recently was the only player from the state of Michigan to compete in this year's PGA Championship at Bethpage Black.

More information on the Michigan Open along with live scoring can be found at this link:
https://mipga.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/mipga19/event/mipga1916/index.htm