Oct. 2, 2008
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Winners of eight of the last 10 Star Matches including two in a row, the Navy golf team will make the trek to West Point this weekend to face Army in the annual Star Match. The two-day, 36-hole event will be scored as match play or the more familiar Ryder Cup-style format with four 4-ball matches played on Saturday and seven singles matches played on Sunday. The first team to reach six points will be declared the winner. Action on both days is slated to begin at 9:00 am.
"We are looking forward to our trip up to West Point for the Star Match this weekend," said 19th-year Navy head coach Pat Owen, who owns a 10-8 record in dual action against the Black Knights. "At the onset of each year, we script out our goals and without question, this is a match that we focus on. We have some experienced players who we will look to to lead the way on what is a tough course. Overall, we are well prepared and excited for a great weekend of golf."
This weekend's matchup marks the 71st meeting between the two programs with Navy holding a commanding 40-29-1 advantage. Forty-three of the previously played duals have utilized the match play format, including each of the last six matches. The Mids, who own a 7-4 record in match play under Owen's guidance, have won 10 of the 19 match play duals played at West Point including three of the last four.
In last year's competition, Navy staged a come-from-behind win on its home course by claiming five of the seven singles matches to earn a 6.5 - 4.5 victory over the Black Knights. Army held a narrow 2.5 - 1.5 advantage following the 4-ball matches, forcing Navy to win five singles matches on the final day. It marked the first time in series history (10 matches in this format) that a team has come back to win the match after trailing following the 4-ball matches. Then-rookie Josh Ziska (Camarillo, Calif.) swept his Army foes, teaming up with Erich Schoen for a 4 & 3 doubles win over Joey Cave and Minou Pak, followed by a 4 & 3 victory over Matt Krembel in singles action. Seniors Chip Hardie (Arnold, Md.), David Miller (Chillicothe, Ohio) and Ryan Wielgus (Bethesda, Md.) also claimed singles wins in last year's win over Army.
This weekend's golf dual will be the second head-to-head Army-Navy competition of the year and the first Star battle. Navy's sprint football team picked up a 14-7 victory over Army last Saturday in a non-Star Game contest at West Point.
Navy leads the all-time series among all sporting events against Army, 885-670-38 (.567). Last year, Navy won the battle of the Star competitions, 15-7, as well as the overall head-to-head matchups, 17-13. Over the last 12 years, Navy has dominated the series, winning 65.1 percent (222-118-5) of the events, while earning a Star in 69.6 percent (166-71-5) of the Star battles. Last year, Navy won stars in men's basketball, men's cross country, women's cross country, football, golf, gymnastics, women's soccer, sprint football, men's swimming & diving, women's swimming & diving, men's tennis, men's indoor track & field, women's indoor track & field, men's outdoor track & field and wrestling.
### Go Navy ###