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    • Top Collegians (original release date 7/15/09)

    PRESS RELEASE
    Columbus, Ohio - July 15, 2009 -

    Top collegians earn invitations to
    Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational

    Tournament officials announced today that the 2009 Golf Coaches Association of America award winners and first-team All-Americans have been invited to play in the Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational. The third-year event continues to boast the largest number of collegiate invitations given in the history of the Nationwide Tour. The inaugural event in 2007 was won by BYU sophomore Daniel Summerhays, who became the first amateur to win on the Nationwide Tour.

    "We are proud to have The Ohio State University Golf Club - Scarlet Course as our host site, and excited to continue the tradition of allowing the best collegiate players in the country the chance to compete in what we believe to be one of the best stops on the Nationwide Tour," said John Aman, President of Champions of the Community Inc., the event's host organization, and Associate Vice President of Strategic Sponsorships for Nationwide.

    The Tournament has received verbal commitments from nine of the ten Division I PING First-Team All-Americans, including Matt Hill, who also captured the Arnold Palmer Award for winning the NCAA national championship individual title and the Jack Nicklaus Award as College Player of the Year, both of which are also eligibility categories for the Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational.

    Hill of North Carolina State is the second player in NCAA history - Tiger Woods of Stanford in 1996 was the other - to win his conference tournament, an NCAA regional and the NCAA Championship tournament en route to the national title since the NCAA started the regional play format. Hill won eight college tournaments during the 2008-09 school year - the previous ACC record was five in one season. Although there is no official NCAA record for most wins in a season, it is believed that Hill has now established the new mark. The remaining members of the Division 1 PING First-Team All-American Team joining Hill in the field for the 2009 Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational are:

    • Sophomore Rickie Fowler of Oklahoma State University is coming off a record setting freshman campaign in which he was named the winner of the 2008 Ben Hogan Award (first ever freshman recipient) and Phil Mickelson Award and competed in 11 stroke play tournaments for the Cowboys, earning top-10s in each of his first nine starts. The Murrieta, California native is the top-ranked amateur player in the country and was named a first-team All-American his first two seasons at Oklahoma State. This year Fowler has recorded four top-5 finishes, including a victory at the Aggie Invitational. He has competed in the last two U.S. Open Championships finishing T60 in his 2008 debut at Torrey Pines and missing the cut in 2009 at Bethpage Black. Fowler reported to Golfweek on June 12 the he "more than likely" will turn professional in September after competing in the Walker Cup.
    • University of Southern California Sophomore Matthew Giles was an All-American honorable mention selection as a freshman. In 2009, the native of Sydney, Australia was a semi-finalist for the Ben Hogan Award and was named to the Golf Australia national team. In route to seven top-10 finishes this year Giles was named co-Pac-10 Player of the Year. He recorded a team-best, and sixth-best in the country, stroke average of 71.35, helped by 10 rounds in the 60s.
    • Morgan Hoffmann of Oklahoma State was named recipient of the Phil Mickelson Award this year as the most outstanding freshman in Division I men's golf. The Wyckoff, New Jersey native was also named the Big 12 Player of the Year and led the Cowboy's in scoring average at 71.55. Hoffmann completed his freshman year with five top-5 finishes including three victories and two second place finishes. Additionally, he tied Oklahoma State's 18-hole scoring record of 62 at the Southern Highlands Collegiate.
    • Senior Billy Horschel of the University of Florida earned first-team All-America honors for the third time and became just the fifth Gator to earn All-America honors four times. He received the 2009 SEC Golfer of the Year Award, joining Camilo Villegas as the only two University of Florida golfers to earn the award more than once. Horschel, a native of Grant Florida, joined Gary Koch as the only Gators to earn First Team All-SEC honors for four straight years. He was a semifinalist for the 2009 Ben Hogan Award and led the SEC and his team with a 71.28 stroke average. Horschel recorded eight top-10 finishes this year, including the 2009 SEC Championship Individual Medal, shooting 10-under 206, and led the Gators to a third-place finish.
    • In 2009 University of Washington junior, Nick Taylor became just the fourth Husky to be named a first-team All-American. The Co-Pac-10 Player of the Year was the top finishing amateur at the this year's United States Open after missing the cut in his first U.S. Open appearance in 2008 at Torrey Pines. A native of Abbotsford, B.C., Taylor was a semi-finalist for the 2009 Ben Hogan Award and recorded a record tying four victories during his junior season for the Husky's.
    • Cameron Tringale played in every tournament for Georgia Tech over his four year career and earned first- or second-team All-America honors three times. The Laguna Niguel, California native was an All-Atlantic Coast conference selection four times and recorded four tournament victories with 22 top-10 finishes in 46 team events during his career. Tringale's stroke average of 71.80 in 140 rounds was the second-best of any Tech player when his career ended. He became only the third Tech freshman ever to win two events, and the first freshman in Georgia Tech history to win an Atlantic Coast Conference title. Tringale, who graduated on May 4, 2009 with a degree in Management, had two top-10 finishes in NCAA Championships and was named a GCAA All-America Scholar in 2009.
    • Clemson junior Kyle Stanley was awarded the 2009 Ben Hogan Award as the top collegiate golfer. The award takes into account performance in college and amateur tournaments from May 2008 to May 2009. Stanley is the second Clemson golfer to win the honor. D.J. Trahan, currently on the PGA Tour, won the award in 2002. Trahan ranks first in school history in career stroke average (71.49) and Stanley is second (71.70). Stanley is Clemson's top golfer of 2009 with a 71.67 stroke average for nine tournaments. He finished in the top-10 seven times, including a victory at the Carpet Classic in Dalton, GA in September. Stanley is ranked third in the United States and eighth in the World Amateur Rankings according to Golfweek. As an amateur this year, Stanley won the Southern Amateur in July in Orlando, FL and the Jones Cup in Sea Island, GA in February. Last summer he also played in the United States Amateur and United States Open. The junior from Gig Harbor, WA turned professional June of 2009 making his professional debut at the Travelers Championship on the PGA TOUR where he finished T19.
    • Mike Van Sickle, who graduated on May 17, 2009 with a major in broadcast and electronic communications, is the all-time leader at Marquette University in career victories (11), scoring average (71.69), career rounds of par-or-better (86), tournament finish percentage (85.2) and career rounds played (139). He owns 24 top-five finishes in 48 collegiate events at MU. Van Sickle, who hails from Wexford, Pennsylvania, was one of eight American players selected to play for Team USA at the Palmer Cup in Cherry Hills Village, Colorado last month as Europe defeated the Americans, 13-11. Despite the loss by Team USA, Van Sickle set a Palmer Cup record for largest margin of victory in a singles match with his win over Leonardo Motta, 8 and 7, on the final day of competition. He was a recipient of the Byron Nelson Award presented by Cleveland Golf/Srixon in 2009 for academic and athletic accomplishment, in addition to character, integrity and citizenship over the course of an entire collegiate career. He was one of 10 semifinalists for the Ben Hogan Award this year and was the 2009 BIG EAST Conference Player of the Year. Van Sickle finished his senior season at Marquette among national leaders in wins with 5 and scoring average with 70.00 and led NCAA Division I in birdies with 165. His five victories in a single season set a new school record. Van Sickle played in his first PGA TOUR event last week at the John Deere Classic where he missed the cut.

     The 2009 Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational will be played July 27 - August 2 at The Ohio State University Golf Club - Scarlet Course, rated as the top collegiate golf course in the country by Golf Digest.  The tournament integrates the top professionals on the Nationwide Tour with the top players from the collegiate ranks to create a unique field of 144 of the best up and coming players in the United States.

    The third annual Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational will feature a purse of $775,000, the third largest on the Nationwide Tour. The Golf Channel will broadcast 9 hours of coverage from Thursday's opening round to the trophy presentation on Sunday. Two Pro-Am's will take place during the week, the Safelite AutoGlass Celebrity Pro-Am on Monday, featuring Ohio State University and community celebrities, and the official Tournament Pro-Am presented by The Wall Street Journal played on Wednesday, July 29, 2009. The Tournament will be operated by HNS Sports Group, a full service event management company headquartered in Dublin, Ohio.

    For questions concerning ticket prices and availability, how to become a volunteer, and general Tournament information please call (614) 764-GOLF or visit www.nchigolf.com

    ABOUT THE NATIONWIDE CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL INVITATIONAL

    The Nationwide Children's Hospital Invitational is owned and operated by Champions of the Community, Inc., an Ohio non-profit corporation. The event is the only tournament on the Nationwide Tour to operate as an "invitational", providing a unique platform in which the best players on the Nationwide Tour will be joined by a select number of the country's top collegian/amateur golfers in a limited field of 144 players. Featuring a purse of $775,000 the tournament is conducted to showcase the best golf on the Nationwide Tour on one of the most challenging venues in the world for the enjoyment of spectators and to benefit charitable organizations in central Ohio. For more information, call 614-764-GOLF or visit our website at www.nchigolf.com.

    ABOUT NATIONWIDE

    Nationwide, based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the U.S. and is rated A+ by A.M. Best. The company provides a full range of personalized insurance and financial services, including auto insurance, motorcycle, boat, homeowners, life insurance, farm, commercial insurance, administrative services, annuities, mortgages, mutual funds, pensions, long-term savings plans and health and productivity services. For more information, visit www.nationwide.com.
    Nationwide, the Nationwide Framemark and On Your Side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.

    ABOUT THE NATIONWIDE TOUR

    Founded (1990), owned and operated by the PGA TOUR, the Nationwide Tour identifies those players who are ready to compete and win on golf's biggest stage. As the official proving ground of the PGA TOUR, two out of three PGA TOUR members are Nationwide Tour alumni. As of July 12, 2009, Tour alumni have won 250 PGA TOUR titles, including 12 majors and three PLAYERS Championships. Twenty-five PGA TOUR cards and total prize money of $18.5 million will be at stake over the course of 29 events in 2009. The PGA TOUR, through the efforts of its three tours and their tournaments, sponsors, players and volunteers, supports over 2,000 local charities and has surpassed $1.3 billion in charitable giving. To learn more about the PGA TOUR and Nationwide Tour and to follow the season-long quest for a PGA TOUR card, visit www.PGATOUR.COM.


    ABOUT THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY ATHLETICS DEPARTMENT

    The Ohio State University Department of Athletics is completely self supporting and receives no university monies, tax dollars or student fees. The Department of Athletics sponsors 36 fully funded varsity teams - 17 for women, 16 for men and three that are co-educational - and is committed to providing the very finest in academic and athletics support in an effort to provide its more than 1,000 student-athletes with a quality, life-changing experience at Ohio State. 

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