By Robert McKinney, Assistant Athletics Director, Communications
SALEM, Ore. -- Willamette University golfer Sam Hinton (Jr., Seaside, OR/Seaside HS) has been selected as the Northwest Conference Men's Golf Student-Athlete of the Week after winning two tournaments between Oct. 1 and Oct. 8. Hinton took first place at the Whitworth Men's Invitational on Oct. 1-2 at the Kalispel Golf and Country Club in Spokane, Washington, and also won the George Fox Invitational on Oct. 7-8 at Gearhart Golf Course in Gearhart, Oregon. In addition, he helped the Bearcats win the team championship at both tournaments.
Hinton shot a 36-hole score of 141 at the Whitworth Men's Invitational, a she recorded a 71 in the first round and a 70 in the second round. He earned the individual title by four strokes over teammate Trent Jones (Jr., Kenmore, WA/Shorecrest HS), who took second place at 145 (75-70). Willamette claimed the team championship with a score of 583 (295-288) and registered a margin of victory of 12 strokes.
At the George Fox Invitational this past weekend, Hinton achieved first place with a score of 144 with a 73 in the first round and a 71 in the second round. He won by two strokes over Jones (75-71) as well as Alex Plusquellec (73-73) of George Fox University, who each shot 146 to tie for second place. The Bearcats were rewarded by winning the team title at the George Fox Invitational by nine strokes with a score of 592 (298-294).
"I am super happy for Sam. He's really playing solid," said Willamette Head Coach Patrick Daugherty. "Winning once against conference teams is good, winning twice back-to-back on a short week is a pretty special accomplishment."
So far this season, Hinton has shot four below-par rounds -- a 70 and three 71s -- with only two rounds over par. His has an unadjusted stroke average of 72.0 this fall.
Hinton's efforts have helped Willamette win all three tournaments involving the Bearcats this season. In addition to the Whitworth and George Fox events, the Bearcats also won the 2017 Collegiate Open, hosted by Pacific Lutheran University on Sept. 17-18 at The Home Course in Dupont, Washington.
The Bearcats will compete at the Northwest Conference Fall Classic on Saturday, Oct. 14 and Sunday, Oct. 15. The tournament, which counts for one-fourth of the overall 2017-18 NWC team championship will be held at Quail Valley Golf Course in Banks, Oregon.