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Clemson Returns to Course Monday at USC-Aiken Cleveland Classic

March 6, 2010

Clemson, SC-Larry Penley’s Clemson golf team returns to action Monday at the USC-Aiken Cleveland Classic in Aiken, SC. The Tigers will be one of 16 teams competing in the two-day 54-hole event to be played at the par 70 Palmetto Golf Club in Aiken. This will be Clemson’s first ever trip to this tournament. The 16 teams will play 36 holes on Monday, March 8, then play 18 on Tuesday.

Clemson is coming off consecutive third-place finishes. The Tigers finished third at the Jacksonville Invitational at the TPC Sawgrass Feb. 8-9, and finished third at the Puerto Rico Classic Feb. 21-23. Clemson is ranked 22nd in the nation in the latest Sagarin Computer rankings.

Seniors Ben Martin and Luke Hopkins will lead the Tigers into their third tournament of the spring season. Martin leads the team in stroke average at 73.14 and has three top 10 finishes this year, including each of his last two events. He shot an eight under par 208 against the national field in Puerto Rico. Hopkins is coming off a seventh place finish at Puerto Rico with a 208 score as well. That was the best individual finish of his Clemson career. The native of Greer, SC has a 73.64 stroke average so far this year.

Corbin Mills has been the top freshman for the Tigers this year and has a 73.82 stroke average, third best on the Clemson team this year. Mills finished fifth at Jacksonville, second best among Tiger golfers, and was 11th at Puerto Rico. He has played at even par for his six rounds in the spring.

Jacob Burger will be in the Clemson lineup for this tournament as well. He shot a solid 218 score in Puerto Rico and his score counted each round and has a 74.27 stroke average for the year.

McCuen Elmore will make his debut as a member of the Clemson team at this week’s tournament. The sophomore from Cheraw, SC played at The Brickyard last year as an individual, but will compete for the Clemson team this week. He won the team qualifier earlier this week, including a round of 66 at Anderson Country Club last Thursday when he made nine birdies.

Elmore reached the Final Four of the South Carolina Match Play last summer.