FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 20, 2023 (Paradise Island, Bahamas) – The reward for being the best golfer at this week’s White Sands Bahamas NCAA Invitational just got a whole lot bigger. The individual medalist will be awarded a spot in the 2024 Puerto Rico Open, set for March 7-10 at the Rio Grande Golf Club in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico.
Play begins Friday at the 54-hole collegiate event, set at the Ocean Club Golf Course on Paradise Island, Bahamas. It is the fourth year of the competition, first played in 2019. Houston, Mississippi and Duke are the past men’s winners over the 7,099-yard layout designed by past major champion Tom Weiskopf.
“We join with the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism in wanting to build this event to be among the most attractive in college golf, said Jeff Raedle, executive vice president for Sportfive, which manages both events. “You start with a fantastic golf course at a beautiful destination, and then when you have the week’s best player earning a chance to tee it up with PGA TOUR professionals, it will be like winning front row tickets to see a favorite music group for him.”
“It will be a dream come true for someone this week,” said Andrew Larkin, head coach at Santa Clara, the host school for the event. Larkin is hoping one of his talented freshmen, J.P. Odland of Tiburon, Calif., or Jeffrey Kwak of La Mirada, Calif., will take home medalist honors, and his squad can win the team title too.
The St. Mary’s Gaels are the favored team, however; led by juniors Kristian Bressum of Denmark, and Connor Reis of Claremont, Calif. “They both have turned the corner this year,” said their head coach Scott Hardy.
But the top-ranked player in the field is Jacksonville State senior Erik Jansson of Sweden. “It’s very exciting to think about,” said Jansson. “I hope that if I am the medalist, it will help my team win the title. And I hope I have a cushion coming to the last hole because making a two-footer on the last hole will be a lot harder with all that is on the line.”
For more coverage of the 2023 White Sands Bahamas NCAA Invitational, follow @WhiteSandsBah on social media and use the following hashtags: #WhiteSandsBahamas and #WhiteSandsNCAA or visit WhiteSandsBahamas.com
ABOUT THE BAHAMAS
With over 700 islands and cays and 16 unique island destinations, The Bahamas lies just 50 miles off the coast of Florida, offering an easy fly-away escape that transports travelers away from their everyday. The Islands of The Bahamas have world-class fishing, diving, boating and thousands of miles of the earth’s most spectacular water and beaches waiting for families, couples and adventurers. Explore all the islands have to offer at www.bahamas.com or on Facebook, YouTube, or Instagram to see why “It’s Better in The Bahamas.”
ABOUT OCEAN CLUB GOLF COURSE
Atlantis Paradise Island’s Ocean Club Golf Course offers a challenging and beautiful course for golfers desiring championship play. Masterfully conceived, the Tom Weiskopf-designed 18-hole, par 72 championship course stretches over 7,100 yards on Atlantis’ peninsula. The course has hosted iconic sporting events such as the Michael Jordan Celebrity Invitational (MJCI), the Michael Douglas & Friends Celebrity Golf Tournament and the Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic. For more information about Atlantis Paradise Island resort and the Ocean Club please visit www.atlantisbahamas.com.
FOR MORE INFORMATION
For White Sands Bahamas NCAA Invitational
Contact: Mike Harmon
BAHAMAS MINISTRY OF TOURISM, INVESTMENTS & AVIATION CONTACT:
Atlantis Paradise Island