NORMAN, Okla. -- The University of Oklahoma men’s golf team wrapped up the 2005-2006 season with its 30th appearance in the NCAA Championships.
The Sooners finished seventh in the NCAA Central Regional to advance to the finals for the second time in three years thanks to a fourth-place finish from junior Anthony Kim and a top-15 finish by senior Shawn LaFontaine.
The highlight of the Sooners’ season came at the Big 12 Championships at Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa, April 24-25. OU set a tournament record with all five players finishing in the top 14 individually to capture the first Big 12 title in school history.
It was also the Sooners’ first tournament victory since 2001.
In an outstanding team performance, three players recorded the highest finishes of their OU careers. Sophomore Phillip Bryan tied for 11th place, while senior Shawn LaFontaine turned in his first top-10, tying for ninth. Brodie Flanders, a senior from Petitcodiac, New Brunswick, finished as the conference runner-up.
As a team, the Sooners finished in the top five in five events, recording a fifth-place finish at the Morris Williams Intercollegiate (April 3-4), a tie for fourth at the Ashworth Invitational (Feb. 27-28), a tie for third at the Hall of Fame (March 17-19) and a third-place finish at the Maxwell (May 13-14).
Senior Justin Fraley turned in the team’s low round of the season, a 66 in the first round of the UH-Hilo Intercollegiate (Feb. 8-10).
OU also picked up a number of individual accolades in 2006.
Head coach Jim Ragan was named the 2006 Big 12 Coach of the Year after leading the Sooners to the Big 12 title.
Junior Anthony Kim, a two-time All-American, also added to his considerable resume in 2006. The La Quinta, Calif., native won consecutive tournaments, the Ashworth Invitational (Feb. 27-28) and the Hall of Fame Invitational (March 17-19) by a combined 15 strokes.
In addition, Kim was a unanimous All-Big 12 selection and was one of three finalists for the prestigious Ben Hogan Award.
In May, Kim and Flanders were honored as members of the PING All-Central Region Team and sophomore Phillip Bryan was named to the Academic All-Big 12 First Team.
Several Sooners also excelled in amateur competition.
In the summer of 2005 Kim earned medalist honors at the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship by winning the stroke-play portion of the event and advanced to the match-play semifinals. He also advanced to the quarterfinals of the U.S. Amateur and was a member of the victorious U.S. Walker Cup team.
LaFontaine, from Cobourg, Ontario, was the runner-up at the Ontario Men’s Amateur Championship and qualified for the Canadian Amateur.
Fellow Canadian Brodie Flanders finished seventh at the New Brunswick Amateur.