After jumping two divisions, St. Thomas starts new era of competition at Golfweek Fall Challenge

Jack Nasby has always felt that St. Thomas was the perfect fit for him when it came to college. The Tommies senior, a native of Edina, Minnesota, got the perks of living in the metropolitan Minneapolis/St. Paul area while also being able to pursue a double major in finance and real estate with a minor in data analytics. He’ll be connected in the Tommies alumni network within the Twin Cities when he graduates.

And he got to play golf. Now, Nasby gets to check one more box at St. Thomas: Division I college golfer.

St. Thomas previously competed at the NCAA Division III level but beginning this year, will compete in Division I athletics. Nasby had heard the concept discussed as an underclassmen but never dreamed it would come to fruition while he was still on campus. He’s quick to acknowledge how much work it took across the board – from coaches to administrators – to transition St. Thomas from the Division III Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference to the Division I Summit League.

“But it is definitely very exciting to get this opportunity to start a new journey,” he said.

Scores: Golfweek Fall Challenge

Nasby and his teammates kicked off the Division I era on Sunday at the Golfweek Fall Challenge. St. Thomas started strong but slid down the leaderboard at the end of the day as its five men played the closing three holes at True Blue Golf Club in Pawley’s Island, South Carolina, in 16 over. Consider that the Tommies were only 19 over for the day.

So much of this season will be new experiences, and that encompasses everything from the teams St. Thomas will compete against to the grass they’ll play on. Nasby is used to Bentgrass in Minnesota, and tried to adapt quickly to the Bermuda at True Blue.

“Biggest different was the grain of the greens, I was paying attention to that with both chipping and putting,” he said.

Interim head coach Sean Barrett said his team has mainly competed in and around Minnesota over the past few seasons. In early qualifying, he tried to prepare his men to compete on longer courses. He tries to set them up from 7,000 yards as much as possible.

“I’d say that we compete – it’s probably 300 yards longer than what we had been competing in,” Barrett said of the yardage jump that came with the division change. “In Minnesota, we just played a lot of different types of courses. I don’t think many would qualify as a championship-style course.

“The quality of the course is much better and there’s certainly more length.”

St. Thomas men's golf


By: Julie Williams
Title: After jumping two divisions, St. Thomas starts new era of competition at Golfweek Fall Challenge
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Published Date: Mon, 13 Sep 2021 15:32:34 +0000

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