April 23, 2009
MILWAUKEE -- Marquette University senior Mike Van Sickle was one of eight individuals selected to play for the United States in the 2009 Palmer Cup, a match-play Ryder Cup-style competition between the best college golfers from the United States and Europe.
Selections were announced Thursday by the Golf Coaches Association of America. Named after legendary golfer Arnold Palmer, this year's Palmer Cup will be held June 3-5 at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village, Colo.
"I'm very excited about this opportunity," said Van Sickle. "I was really hoping that I would make the team and it became a goal of mine at the beginning of the season. This is one of those tangible rewards for all off the hard work and time you put in behind the scenes. My play this last year has improved across the board, and to accomplish that goal is very gratifying. It seems like it's going to be really strong field."
Bud Cauley (Alabama), Morgan Hoffman (Oklahoma State), Trent Leon (Oklahoma State), Jaime Lovemark (USC), Adam Mitchell (Georgia), Cameron Tringale (Georgia Tech) and Steve Ziegler (Stanford) have been selected to join Van Sickle on the U.S. team.
Picked to defend team Europe's 2008 Palmer Cup title are Jorge Campillo (Indiana), Stephan Gross (Arizona State), Leonardo Motta (University of Milan), Henrik Norlander (Augusta State), Chris Paisley (Tennessee), Andrea Pavan (Texas A&M) and Tim Sluiter (USC) and Robin Windgardh (Tennessee).
Van Sickle is the eighth-ranked amateur in the world, according to the latest Scratch Players World Amateur Ranking, and is currently the fourth-ranked amateur in the United States by the R&A World Amateur Golf Ranking. He has posted a school-record 11 collegiate victories and his five wins this year leads all of NCAA Division I. Van Sickle currently leads the nation in scoring average (69.67), birdies (160), eagles (8), sub-par strokes per round (5.33) and par-4 scoring (3.94).
The Palmer Cup is held every odd year in the U.S., with Europe hosting in even years. Washington's Matt Thurmond will coach the U.S. team as it tries to win back the cup after Europe's 14-10 victory last year at Scotland's Glasgow Golf Club. The U.S. holds a 6-5-1 overall lead in the annual competition.
"I think this is a great honor for Mike," said Marquette head coach Tim Grogan. "It's one of college golf's most prestigious events and for Mike to be selected as one of the top eight players is well-deserved. It should be a great experience for him. We're proud to have him represent Marquette University and the United States in this event."
2009 Palmer Cup Participants
Bud Cauley, Alabama
Morgan Hoffmann, Oklahoma State
Trent Leon, Oklahoma State
Jaime Lovemark, Southern California
Adam Mitchell, Georgia
Cameron Tringale, Georgia Tech
Mike Van Sickle, Marquette
Steve Ziegler, Stanford
Jorge Campillo, Indiana (Spain)
Stephan Gross, Arizona State (Germany)
Leonardo Motta, Univ. of Milan (Italy)
Henrik Norlander, Augusta State (Sweden)
Chris Paisley, Tennessee (England)
Andrea Pavan, Texas A&M (Italy)
Tim Sluiter, Southern California (The Netherlands)
Robin Windgardh, Tennessee (Sweden)