STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/MSU Athletics) – Ready to build on a successful first season at the helm of the Mississippi State men's golf team, Dusty Smith announced his team's 2018-19 schedule on Thursday.
After leading the Bulldog linksters to an NCAA Regional last season, his second Bulldog golf edition will play a 10-event regular-season slate that wraps on the homefront April 15-16 with the MSU-hosted Old Waverly Collegiate Championship.
"We wanted a schedule that featured challenging tournament fields as well as championship golf courses that will help us grow as we progress through the season," Smith said. "I feel like the new tournaments on the schedule will get us out of our comfort zone and ultimately make our team better because of it. I am looking forward to this upcoming season and the opportunity to coach this team."
State's schedule has a new look in 2018-19 as it returns to only four of the tournaments it participated in last season.
The fall campaign tees off with a pair of new contests. On August 31, the Bulldogs take their first swings of the season in California at the Carmel Cup, a three-day tournament at the prestigious Pebble Beach Golf Links. A couple of weeks later they travel to Louisville, Ky., for the Louisville Cardinal Challenge, Sept. 14-16.
State opens October on familiar fairways as it plays in the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate for the ninth consecutive season. Peng Pichaikool took home eighth place, one of his three Top 10 finishes of the campaign, in last year's event.
MSU's fall concludes with another new challenge, the Steelwood Collegiate, a two-day tournament hosted by South Alabama October 27-28 in Loxley, Ala.
State's spring starts off where it did last season, the SunTrust Gator Invitational in Gainesville, Fla., on February 16-17.
After a short break, Smith's squad plays for three consecutive weeks in March. The stretch begins March 9-10 in Scottsdale, Ariz., with the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate. Five days later the Bulldogs begin play at the Schenkel Invitational, where the team captured a fourth-place finish a year ago. The month concludes March 23-24 at the Tar Heel Intercollegiate in Chapel Hill, N.C.
MSU treks to Franklin, Tenn., April 5-7 for the Mason Rudolph Championship before returning to the friendly confines of Old Waverly Golf Club in West Point, Miss., for the Old Waverly Collegiate Championship. State took fourth at its home tournament last season and Garrett Johnson shot 2-under to lead the team and earn a Top 5 finish.
The MSU-hosted event serves as the Bulldogs' final tuneup for the SEC Championship, which takes place April 24-28 at Sea Island Golf Club in St. Simons Island, Ga.
Following their NCAA Regional bid since 2014, the Golf Dawgs will look to improve and play in this season's NCAA Championships, set for May 18-22 at Blessings Golf Course in Fayetteville, Ark. The NCAA Regionals precede the championships May 13-15 at locations to be determined.
For more information on the Bulldogs, follow the program on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by searching @HailStateMG.
MSU men's golf coach Dusty Smith:
"I am excited to announce our schedule for the 2018-19 season. We wanted a schedule that featured challenging tournament fields as well as championship golf courses that will help us grow as we progress through the season. Our schedule includes tournaments in eight different states across the United States. We added several new events this year. I feel like the new tournaments on the schedule will get us out of our comfort zone and ultimately make our team better because of it. I am looking forward to this upcoming season and the opportunity to coach this team."
Aug. 31-Sept. 2 Carmel Cup Pebble Beach, Calif. (Pebble Beach Golf Links)
Sept. 14-16 Louisville Cardinal Challenge Louisville, Ky. (University of Louisville Golf Club)
Oct. 8-9 Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate Vestavia Hills, Ala. (Old Overton Club)
Oct. 27-28 Steelwood Collegiate Invitational Loxley, Ala. (Steelwood Country Club)
Feb. 16-17 SunTrust Gator Invitational Gainesville, Fla. (Mark Bostick Golf Course)
March 9-10 Desert Mountain Intercollegiate Scottsdale, Ariz. (Desert Mountain)
March 15-17 Schenkel Invitational Statesboro, Ga. (Forest Heights Country Club)
March 23-24 Tar Heel Intercollegiate Chapel Hill, N.C. (UNC Finley Golf Course)
April 5-7 Mason Rudolph Championship Franklin, Tenn. (Vanderbilt Legends Club)
April 15-16 Old Waverly Collegiate Championship West Point, Miss. (Old Waverly Golf Club)
April 24-28 SEC Championship St. Simons Island, Ga. (Sea Island Golf Club)
May 13-15 NCAA Regionals TBD
May 18-22 NCAA Championships Fayetteville, Ark. (Blessings Golf Course)