By BRIAN WOODSON
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
It’s been a good month for the Graham golf team. It hasn’t been all that bad for G-Men golfing alumni either.
Just ask Morgan Brewster.
“I am just really excited, I can’t wait,” Brewster said. “I am really excited, it is a great opportunity to go represent the college in a positive way.”
Brewster, a sophomore at Bluefield College, will represent the Rams in the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) Men’s Golf Championship on Oct. 21-24 at the Hombre Golf Club in Panama City Beach, Fla.
“I am really excited, just having that opportunity to play at a Christian college like that and just trying to be positive example throughout everything we do,” Brewster said.
A four-year participant at Graham in golf and soccer, Brewster was a key cog in the G-Men’s third place finish at the Group A state golf championship in 2011.
His game has only continued to improve, and Bluefield golf coach BJ Bauer is thrilled that Brewster is helping to put Rams’ golf back on the national stage.
"This is just a great start to rebuilding the Bluefield College golf program," said Bauer, on bcrams.com. "I know Morgan has worked hard for this. He's coachable, which may not always be the case in golf. He's always willing to help others and is a great asset for our team and program."
Brewster’s college experience began at Radford, but Brewster transferred to Bluefield, played for the Rams in the spring semester, and has continued to play well in the fall.
“I think my average is right around 75,” Brewster said. “We have played some pretty difficult courses so I am happy with that.”
What made him happier was winning the Hiwassee Invitational on Sept. 8 in Vonore, Tenn. That performance put him on the radar for the officials that select the players to participate in the NCCAA national event.
“I won it by four strokes, I guess Coach sent in the scores and the committee selected six individuals out of the whole country,” said Brewster, who finished ahead of teammate Logan Tilley, who placed third at Hiwassee. “There were 18 teams and six individuals and I was lucky enough to go win a spot. It was real nice.”
Brewster went to bed on Sept. 26, knowing that his fate would be decided the next day.
“I was really shocked, the coach called me the night before and he was you like, ‘You will be right on the bubble’ and it will be up to the committee if you go or not,” Brewster said.
The good news came the next morning.
“He called me the next day, and the only thing he said — he didn’t say hello — he just said ‘We are going to Panama’ so it was really exciting,” Brewster said. “I was kind of shocked at first, but now I can’t wait.”
Brewster has remained a steady presence for the Graham golf team, having been at Fincastle on the Mountain on Oct. 3 when the G-Men qualified for the Group 2A state tournament, an event they won on Tuesday.
He still has sweet memories of 2011 when the G-Men played well in the Group A state tournament, finishing in a tie for second before settling for third place.
“We were a really good team, we went to state our senior year, we were tied for second and finished third after a playoff,” Brewster said. “We had a really good team and that is kind of what I am hoping will come to Bluefield College.
“With the team we had at Graham, I guess we kind of took it for granted. We were really deep and just seeing some of these guys and how they have stepped up as sophomores and now to see how they are playing now, I wish them the best of luck and hope they can bring home a state championship.”
They did just that, led by seniors Ben Ramsey and Zach Toohey, and now Brewster is eager to take his swings against the best players the NCCAA can provide, a swing that has consistently improved since the spring.
“I actually transferred from Radford and I played last semester,” Brewster said. “We played in I don’t know how many tournaments this semester.
“One of the tournaments I didn’t play too well at, the second one was what I was looking for.”
It was that win at Hiwassee that Brewster said put him over the top. His next stop is the NCAA nationals in Florida.
“I am playing a lot better this year than I did last year so hopefully I can just build on that and have a good three rounds,” he said.
Bauer, who played at Bluefield College, is working to rebuild the Rams back to its status as a national contender in golf.
Brewster likes what he has seen.
“When he played they were pretty good, they went to the national tournament a couple of times,” Brewster said. “I think with that experience and us obviously going this coming year, hopefully we can get some recruits in that actually play golf at a high level and hopefully make a couple of more national tournaments...
“To be of a rebuilding program, some rebuilding programs don’t get much acknowledgment because they are not the best, but to see the recruits that we have coming in there is a bright future for Bluefield College golf.”
Could that include a few players from Graham? Four of them comprise the state championship squad, including Ben Ramsey and Zach Toohey, who have definite potential to play in college.
“That would be nice, Ben is a really good golfer and I am proud of him with how he has progressed this year,” Brewster said. “He has really come along and hopefully bigger and better things are coming his way.”
Brewster, who brother, Scott, was a standout basketball player at Graham, anticipates plenty of good times ahead for the Bluefield golf team, and his trip to the NCCAA nationals is certainly a good sign that the program is heading in the right direction.
“Coach did play at Bluefield, he is nice to play for, he makes practice and wanting to playing golf more exciting,” Brewster said. “It is a lot easier to come out here every day when you have something to look forward to.
“The kids we have on the golf team now are just pushing each other to get so much better so we have a bright future.”
The present isn’t bad either.
—Contact Brian Woodson at firstname.lastname@example.org