Over $20,000 were raised to benefit The First Tee of Greater El Paso during the 40th Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic.
Rare autographed golf collectibles were auctioned off during the welcome dinner that brought 20 of the nation’s top collegiate golfers to El Paso. Western Refining Inc. pledged to match up to $10,000 of funds raised through the live auction.
“Western Refining has been a longtime supporter of the First Tee of El Paso program,” said Gary Hanson, Vice President of Corporate Communications for Western Refining and chairman of the All-American Golf Classic. “It is a great program that teaches the principles of life through golf. We are pleased to help contribute to this great program and all the benefits it provides to the young people of El Paso.”
Aside from auctioning golf collectibles, guests in attendance were able to make monetary contributions to benefit the nonprofit headed by LPGA veteran Kristi Albers.
“It’s very nice when the Western Refining community can come together and support a local program such as The First Tee of Greater El Paso,” said Albers. “The Sun Bowl Western Refining All-American Golf Classic allowed us to have a live auction of some of our pin flags from the four PGA tour majors this year.
“Western Refining matched every dollar that was won for each flag up to $10,000. I, personally, was left speechless by this auction as the support was overwhelming. It’s always nice to know that people notice the great things we are doing at The First Tee of Greater El Paso.”
Albers founded the organization in 2008 following her retirement as a golf professional.
The First Tee of Greater El Paso uses a 3,000 sq. foot clubhouse for their classroom activities. Children ages 5-18 from the El Paso area and its surrounding communities can join the organization for low annual and session fees. Scholarships are available to those who require it.
In 40 years, only a single champion of the Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic held bragging rights as the only participant with multiple victories. On Sunday afternoon, University of New Mexico senior Gavin Green rewrote the history of the event becoming the second champion with back-to-back victories in the distinguished tournament.
“Today was a good day,” said Green. “I got off to a decent start but Rico (Hoey) pulled tied with me after one. I forgot about it and just moved on and played my game. I made some putts and that’s what it took to finish first.”
The Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, native, finished 14-under, seven strokes ahead of second-place finishers Jonathan Garrick (UCLA) and Rico Hoey (USC) to receive his second Lee Trevino trophy at the El Paso Country Club. Green carded a 66 in the final round following scores of 71 and 62 in the first two rounds on Saturday.
Aside from tying the tournament’s best individual round and best second round scores (62), Green also tied Sebastian Cappelen’s best-closing 36-hole total score record set in 2012 (128).
Green began his day with bogey on one, he immediately bounced back with a pair of birdies on two and three. Garrick and Hoey appeared to threaten Green’s quest for the repeat at times, but the 2014 Mountain West Conference Player of the Year carried over the momentum from Saturday’s finish to pull away with the win.
“It’s an awesome feeling for me to be able to say that, with all the big names that have won this tournament, I was able to do it twice.” Green added.
Clemson’s Chris Patton is the only other player to have accomplished the repeat feat at the All-American Classic with wins in 1988 and 1989.
Defending champion Gavin Green concluded day one of the Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic atop the leaderboard with a two-stroke lead over Southern California’s Rico Hoey at the El Paso Country Club.
“I got off to a slow start, I was three over after four holes, but then I just restarted myself and my game and played good golf after that,” said Green. “I made a few putts and that changed my game. Going into tomorrow I just have to play my own game and try and stay patient.”
The New Mexico senior shot 71 in the first round before tying the tournament’s best individual round and best second round scores of 62. Green joins Billy Horschel (Florida, 2006) as the lowest second round score in tournament history. Aside from Green and Horschel, Luke List (Vanderbilt, 2006), and Webb Simpson (Wake Forest, 2007) have also shot rounds of 62 in the 40-year old tournament.
Green finished the day in style carding an eagle on the par-5 ninth hole, his final hole of the day.
Hoey is two shots back in second with scores of 69 and 66, while Missouri’s Ryan Zech stands in third at 5-under.
Third-round tee times are scheduled for 8:00 a.m. (MT) on Sunday, Nov. 9, at the El Paso Country Club.
Twenty of the nation’s top collegiate golfers will make their way to El Paso to compete in the 40th edition of the Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic beginning Friday, Nov. 6, at the El Paso Country Club.
“Western is proud to again team with the Sun Bowl Association to welcome the most elite college golfers in the country to El Paso,” said Jeff Stevens, President and CEO of Western Refining. “For 40 years, this tournament has brought the best college golfers to our city. The alumni of this tournament are now the legends of the PGA Tour and this week El Pasoans will have the chance to see the future legends of golf perform here at El Paso Country Club.”
The 2014 field of All-Americans includes 14 of the top 100 amateur golfers in the world, according to the World Amateur Golf Rankings including third-ranked amateur Robby Shelton. The Alabama sophomore was tabbed the Southeastern Conference Player and Freshman of the Year en route to being named the 2014 National Freshman of the Year.
Returning to the All-American Classic is the 2013 defending champion Gavin Green from the University of New Mexico. Also making a second appearance in El Paso are Jonathan Garrick (UCLA), Jordan Niebrugge (Oklahoma State) and Ben Taylor (LSU).
The list of All-Americans includes five 2014 Palmer Cup representatives, four conference players of the year, four conference freshmen of the year honorees and a 2014 The Masters participant.
Throughout the years, many Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic competitors have gone on to pursue successful careers in the Professional Golfers’ Association of America and on the PGA Tour. Some of the past champions include Webb Simpson (2007), Ricky Barnes (2000), Notah Begay (1994), David Duval (1991), Matt Kuchar (1999), Davis Love III (1984), Chris Nallen (2003), Jerry Pate (1974), Nicholas Thompson (2004) and Tiger Woods (1995).
Alumni of the Golf Classic have gone on to earn more than $1.7 billion and win 634 events on the PGA Tour. In all, 145 colleges and universities have participated in the tournament, raising $753,000 in scholarship money for the participating institutions.
Each university represented by the Western Refining College All-Americans will receive a $1,000 scholarship.
Festivities will begin on Friday, Nov. 7, at 9 a.m. with the Titleist Long Drive and PING Putting contests at the El Paso Country Club. The first two rounds will be played on Saturday, Nov. 8, beginning at 8 a.m. The final round is scheduled to start at 8 a.m. on Sunday. The event is open and free to the public.
2014 All-America Classic Field
Stanford • Junior
Tied for third at the 2014 NCAA Championships … tied for sixth at the 2013 Marquette Invitational … tied for third at the Pac-12 Preview and tied for seventh at the Illini Invitational in 2012 … named to the 2012 Pac-12 All-Freshman Team … represented Wales in the 2014 Eisenhower Trophy Japan …tied for first at the 2014 European Amateur Team Championship and the 2012 Tillman Trophy … tied for sixth at the 2014 Porter Cup Niagara Falls … ranked 42nd in the Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings.
UCLA • Junior
Named to the 2014 All-Pac-12 Second Team … finished third at the 2014 Purdue Boilermakers … tied for third at the Erin Hills and tied for fourth at the U.S. Collegiate Championships as a sophomore … placed seventh at the Pac-12 Championships … took second at the 2013 CS San Marcos Invitational and tied for fourth at the 2014 Western Intercollegiate … three-time Director’s Honor Roll honoree … medalist at the 2012 U.S. Amateur Sectional Qualifying … tied for first at the 2012 Western Amateur … tied for second at the 2014 Pacific Coast Amateur.
Virginia Tech • Senior
Selected to the 2014 All-Atlantic Coast Conference First Team and the All-East Region … claimed back-to-back victories at the Mission Inn Spring Spectacular and the Furman Intercollegiate as a junior … took runner-up honors at the Navy Spring Invitational in 2013 … named to the 2012 PING All-East Region Team, the All-ACC Academic Men’s Golf Team and the ACC Academic Honor Roll … qualified for the 2013 U.S. Amateur … advanced to the round of 32 at the 2013 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship … runner-up at the 2013 North Carolina Amateur.
SMU • Junior
Garnered PING All-Central Region accolades as a freshman and sophomore … took medalist honors at the American Athletic Conference Championships … tied for ninth during stroke play at the NCAA Championships … runner-up at the National Invitational Tournament … finished third at the Fighting Illini Invitational, the Erin Hill Intercollegiate and the Gifford Collegiate … took runner-up honors at the 2013 Conference USA Championships as a freshman … named the C-USA Freshman of the Year … member of the 2014 United States Palmer Cup team … selected for Team USA at the World Amateur Team Championships … advanced to the round of 16 at the 2014 U.S. Amateur and quarterfinals of match play at the U.S. Amateur Public Links … won the 2013 Trans-Mississippi Championship and the U.S. Amateur Qualifier … 13th in the Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings.
San Diego • Senior
Selected the West Coast Conference Player of the Year following a first-place finish at the 2014 WCC Championships … a three-time All-WCC team honoree … tabbed a 2014 Academic All-American … winner at the 2014 The Farms Invitational and the Redhawk Invitational … named a 2014 Cleveland Golf/Srixon All-American Scholar … finished first at the 2013 St. Mary’s Invitational … part of the 2013 WCC All-Academic Squad … honored as the WCC Freshman of the Year … represented Scotland in the 2014 World Amateur Championships … competed for Team Europe in the 2014 Palmer Cup … took first at the 2014 St. Andrews Links Trophy … finished first at the Scottish Amateur Championship in 2012 … 23rd in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
UCLA • Junior
Earned Second-Team All-Pac-12 honors as a sophomore … tied for second at the 2014 Southern Highlands Collegiate Masters … making second-consecutive appearance at All-American Classic following honorable mention All-American accolades as a freshman … selected to the 2013 All-Pac-12 Freshman Team … winner at the Cal Poly Invitational in 2012 … tied for third at the 2013 Pac-12 Championships … tied for second at the 2013 NCAA West Regional … finished tied for first at the 2014 Canadian Amateur … two-time U.S. Amateur Round of 32 participant … tied for fifth at the Southern Amateur … reached the Sweet 16 at the Western Amateur.
UNM • Senior
Returning to the Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Classic to defend his 2013 title … tabbed the 2014 Mountain West Conference Player of the Year … a two-time PING All-West Region selection and MWC First Team honoree … winner at the 2014 Mountain West Conference Championships and the Lone Star Invitational … defended back-to-back wins at the William H. Tucker Intercollegiate with a third-consecutive win in 2014 … as a sophomore finished third at the MWC Championships and tied for second at the PING Golfweek Preview … became the first amateur to win an event on the Asian Development Tour following a top finish at the PGM Vacory Templer Park Championship … won the 2012 Malaysian Amateur Open … 18th in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
USC • Sophomore
Tabbed the 2014 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year selected to the 2014 All-West Region, All-Pac-12 and Pac-12 All-Freshman first team honors … won the 2014 Gifford Collegiate … took second at The Goodwin and the San Diego Classic as a freshman … tied for third at the Western Intercollegiate and fourth at the U.S. Collegiate Championships … member of the 2014 Palmer Cup … finished first at the North & South … co-medalist at the 2014 U.S. Public Links … tied for fourth at the 2014 Sunnehanna Tournament … 30th on the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
Redlands • Senior
Claimed the 2014 NCAA DIII Individual Championship … tabbed as the 2014 Jack Nicklaus Division III Player of the Year … elected to the 2014 All-Nicklaus Team … received the Arnold Palmer Award and Lee Fulmer Player of the Year accolades … earned first team All-American and all-west region first team recognition … a three-time Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference First Team selection … selected to the CoSIDA Academic All-America First Team and All-District First Team … earned SCIAC All-Academic Men’s Golf team and GCAA Scholar All-America Honors … finished fifth at the 2014 Porter Cup.
Baylor • Senior
Winner at the 2013 and 2014 UTSA Oak Hills … finished second at the Querencia Cabo Collegiate in 2014 … posted a top-25 finish at the 2014 NCAA Pullman Regional … member of the Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll … claimed the 2014 Southwest Amateur … reached the Round of 16 at the 2014 U.S. Amateur.
South Florida • Junior
Selected to the 2014 Southeast All-Region Team … medalist at the Kiawah Invitational … took second at the 2014 American Conference Championships … tabbed the 2013 BIG EAST Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year … finished second at the 2013 BIG EAST Championships … winner at the Reed Jones Invitational and AutoTrader.com Invitational in 2013 … earned BIG EAST Academic All-Conference honors in 2013 … finished third at the Players Amateur, fourth at the Rice Planters Amateur and reached the Round of 32 at the U.S. Amateur in 2013.
Oklahoma State • Junior
Two-time honorable mention All-American making his second appearance at the Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic … competed at the 2014 The Masters … earned back-to-back- All-Big 12 First Team and PING All-Central Region honors … finished first at the 2014 Amer Ari Invitational … tied for second at the NCAA Columbia Regional … was runner up at the 2013 Morris Williams Intercollegiate … named to the Big 12 All-Academic First Team … won the 2013 U.S. Amateur Public Links and the Western Amateur Championship … took top honors at the 2013 WSGA Match Play Championship … competed for the United States at the 2013 Spirit International … member of the 2014 Big 12 All-Academic First Team … 30th in the Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings.
Western Carolina • Senior
Claimed the 2014 Southern Conference Championship … a back-to-back PING All-East Region honoree … earned an at-large individual bid into the NCAA Championship … named the 2014 Southern Conference Men’s Golfer of the Year … a two-time All-Southern Conference Team, Southern Conference Spring Academic All-Conference Team and Southern Conference Honor Roll honoree … took first at the 2012 Southwestern Amateur … medalist at the 2013 Golfweek Program Challenge, the Cardinal Intercollegiate and the Hummingbird Intercollegiate … took second at the Wofford Invitational … tabbed to the 2012 Southern Conference All-Freshman Team.
Houston • Senior
Selected to the 2014 All-American Athletic Conference Team … two-time All-Conference USA Team … winner at the Bayou City Intercollegiate, the Cabo Collegiate and the Border Olympics in 2014 … also took medalist honors at the 2013 Conference USA Championships … finished first at the 2013 Northern Collegiate … reached the quarterfinals of the 2014 U.S. Amateur Championships … 44th in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
Washington • Junior
Tabbed to the 2014 PING All-Region Team … member of the 2014 All-Pac 12 Second Team … claimed the 2014 NCAA Raleigh Regional crown … finished first at the Bandon Dunes Championships … Tied for fourth at the Trans-Mississippi Championships … tied for third at the 2013 Pac Coast Amateur.
Alabama • Sophomore
2014 National Freshman of the Year … named the 2014 Southeastern Conference Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year … member of the All-SEC First Team… finished tied for third at the NCAA Championships as a freshman … also finished third at the SEC Championship … won the Olympia Fields Fighting Illini Invitational and the Puerto Rico Classic … took co-medalist honors at the Olympia Fields Fighting Illini Invitational … tied for first at the Linger Longer Invitational … finished third at the SMU Querencia Cab Collegiate … participated in the 2014 Palmer Cup … qualified for the 2014 U.S. Open … third in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
Barry • Junior
Named the DII National Player of the Year … selected to the Golf Coaches Association of America All-Nicklaus Team … a two-time DII PING First Team All-American and All-South Region … tabbed to the All-Sunshine State Conference First Team and All-SSC Tournament Team … won seven tournaments setting DII national records for a sophomore … broke school record for tournament titles in career in season winning the SSC Championship, Brickyard Invitational, Shark Invitational, Matlock Classic, St. Edward’s Invitational, Bobcat Invitational and the Buccaneer Invitational … won the DII NCAA Championships match plays semifinals … tabbed the 2013 Phil Mickelson award winner … named the 2013 SSC Freshman of the Year and to the All-SSC First Team … 38th in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.
LSU • Senior
Making second appearance at the Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic … participated in 2013 as the DII National Player of the Year … tied for sixth at the 2014 NCAA Championships … honored as the Louisiana Collegiate Newcomer of the Year by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association … a two-time DII First Team All-American … tabbed the 2012 Jack Nicklaus Award winner … won back-to-back Sunshine State Conference Player of the Year honors … claimed the DII Southeast Regional crown as a sophomore … took individual medalist honors at the SSC Championships as a freshman … member of the Team Europe Palmer Cup in 2013 … 2013 U.S. Amateur qualifier.
Virginia Tech • Senior
Selected to the 2014 Jack Nicklaus Team … two-time All-Atlantic Coast Conference First Team and All-East Region First Team honoree … set a school record with three individual victories for the season with wins at the Golfweek Conference Challenge, VCU Shootout and the Bank of Tennessee Intercollegiate … named to the 2012 and 2013 All-ACC Academic Men’s Team Golf and ACC Academic Honor Roll … finished first at the 2014 Players Amateur.
Missouri • Senior
Finished ninth at the 2014 NCAA Championship … finished first at the 2014 Turning Stone Intercollegiate … won the 2012 Mizzou Intercollegiate … finished 14th at the NCAA Columbia Regional … 19th at the Southeastern Conference Championships … took runner-up honors at the Missouri Amateur in 2013.
Three El Pasoans returned to the Sun City from Arlington, Texas, with first-place medals around their necks following the NFL Punt, Pass & Kick Team Championships at the AT&T Stadium this past weekend.
Anthony Favela, age 9, Jasper Sanchez, age 13, and Edward Duran, age 15, finished first in their respective divisions. Favela, a student at Loma Terrace Elementary, topped the 8-9 year old division with a total distance of 159’5”. Sanchez, a student at Sybert Middle School, won the 12-13 division with a score of 310’9”. Duran, a freshman at Franklin High School, claimed the oldest boys’ division with total distance of 269’10”.
“Going to Arlington to represent El Paso in this competition was a great experience for me,” said Duran. “More than the competition, I had a chance to go to my first NFL game and meet great people. I was surprised to win, but it’s a great feeling to know we represented El Paso well. I’m very appreciative to everyone at the Sun Bowl Association and Price’s Creameries for giving me this experience.”
The competition took place on Saturday evening and all participants were honored during pregame ceremonies prior to the Dallas Cowboys’ game against the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday.
All three champions will now await results from all Team Championships. The top four winners of each age group advance to the National Finals.
The sectional competition is hosted annually by the Sun Bowl Association in conjunction with the El Paso Parks and Recreation Department and sponsored by Price’s Creameries.