Sunday, May 23, 2004

Surge's Auterson in NJCAA DIII golf

College update

By Shannon Russell
The Cincinnati Enquirer


Urbana's David Fischer (Oak Hills) was named to the All-American Mideast Conference South Division baseball team. The freshman second baseman led the team in total bases with 65 and batted .338.

Centre College shortstop Mike Pangallo (Newport Central Catholic) was named first-team, all Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference after leading the baseball team in six categories.

Northern Kentucky University women's golfer Kim Keyer-Scott was named to the National Golf Coaches Association Division II All-America Team. Keyer-Scott, a junior, earned second-team All-America honors from the NGCA. She tied for 16th place individually at the NCAA Division II national finals last week with a four-round total of 314 (+26). She is the only three-time All-American in NKU golf history.

Northern Kentucky University men's golfer Jonathan Ehlen (Ryle) has been named a Division II honorable mention All-American.

By the time he finished his freshman year, Cincinnati State rookie Mike Auterson hoped to win two golf tournaments and qualify for the Division III national championship. Mission accomplished, and then some.

Auterson is the third golfer in Surge history to qualify for the National Junior College Athletic Association Division III national championship in Chautauqua, N.Y., June 7-11. To get there, he won the Region XII Tournament in Michigan - a Cincinnati State first - and was medalist in five of the 10 tournaments in which he competed.

"The top 10 finishers (at nationals) are All-Americans, and the way Mike plays, he has a good chance to be one," 10th-year Cincinnati State coach Scott Webb said. "He can hit the ball a mile, has an excellent short game, and the best thing is his mental attitude, because he never gives up."

As a Milford senior, Auterson placed 13th overall at the state tournament and ranked among the Greater Miami Conference's top 10 for his 9-hole average (38). Auterson had every intention of furthering his golf career after graduation but was uncertain which college to attend.

"I wasn't ready to leave home quite yet," said Auterson, who received lukewarm receptions from some local programs until meeting Webb.

One of two freshmen, Auterson complemented his teammates. With Tim Myers (Mason) and sophomores Jon Feldkamp (La Salle), Jimmy Early (Harrison), Chad Ward (McNicholas) and Chris Johnson (Elder), the team earned a NJCAA No. 4 ranking for the first time in school history.

As a team, the Surge won two regular-season tournaments, a dual match and the NJCAA sub-regional. They were one shot down to Columbus State going into the final 18 holes of the regional but finished second to the defending national champions.

Webb said Auterson's intensity and skill helped - not to mention his inability to ignore a challenge - propel the team all season.

"I'd put all my money on Mike, because he's determined to prove you wrong," Webb said.

Auterson, whose average is 74, was a medalist after shooting a season-low 71 at a Miami University Middletown tournament in April. Not every tournament has been a breeze. Auterson finished with a season-high 80 after carding a nine on the final hole at the Sinclair Tournament in Vandalia.

"When I was walking off the green, people were telling me if they'd done what I'd done, they'd have been throwing their clubs in the bushes. I kept my composure, though, and looked at it like a learning experience," Auterson said.

In the national tournament, Auterson is aiming for a top-5 finish and intends to pursue Division I schools after the season.

"I'm trying to go into the tournament with no expectations and not put any more pressure on," Auterson said.

College Update will be on hiatus for the summer. It will resume during the fall semester.

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