Mooney takes 2nd in national golf test

Published 5:00 am Monday, June 10, 2002

CHAUTAUQUA, N.Y. – Co-Lin’s Matt Mooney, a sophomore fromBrookhaven, finished runner-up in the NJCAA Division III NationalGolf Tournament at the Chautauqua Golf Club. He fired a final round75 Friday and posted a 4-day total of 295, two strokes behindchampion Joe Kunz of Monroe County (N.Y.) who shot par 72.

Kunz had a 4-day score of 75-73-73-72–293. Mooney shot a2-under 70 in the first round to lead the field by 2 strokes overJustin Heilcamp of Central Lakes (Minn.) Mooney shot 79 Wednesdayand 71 Thursday to carry a 1 stroke lead over Kunz into the finalround.

“It was a real tough course,” said Mooney. “The fairways werereal narrow and the rough was thick but it was fair. Those were thefastest greens I’ve ever putted on.”

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Mooney carried Callaway Big Bertha woods and Cleveland bladeirons in his bag. He was using an old Ping putter that was given tohim by his grandfather, the late Bruce Brady.

“I praise the Lord for the opportunity to play in thetournament,” said Mooney. “I had a good four days to play upthere.”

Joe Young of Co-Lin shot an 89-84-89-85–347. Will Kimmel ofSouthwest Mississippi Community College shot 80-82-79-77–318 andfinished 28th.

Mooney said it rained during the first round. “I started on the10th hole, a par 5, and holed out from 35 yards for eagle. That wasa lot of fun. That really boosted my confidence.

“I really wish I could have finished a little stronger,” saidMooney. “Kunz was really solid. He hit the ball farther thananybody I’ve ever seen. He hit the ball 35 yards farther than anyof my drives.”

Mooney was among five golfers to make First Team All-American.He said he plans to attend Ole Miss this fall. He may try to walkon and play for the Ole Miss golf team.

Mooney said Co-Lin golf coach Chuck Holloway was an asset and amentor during the tournament. “He followed me around every hole andhelped me.”

Nate Dyer of SUNY Cobleskil was third at 301. Eric Rowbottom ofCentral Lakes finished fourth at 302. Ted Fitzpatrick of Bergen wasfifth at 305, followed by Jeff Clark of Riverland at 306 and DeanHunt of Raritan Valley and Brad Myatt of Mohawk Valley at 307.