Small named Coach of the Year

By Brendyn Jones, Staff Writer

Illinois men’s golf head coach Mike Small was honored with Big Ten Golf Coach of the Year award on Tuesday after the team won its fifth consecutive Big Ten Championship.

This is the 11th time Small has been named Big Ten Coach of the Year and it’s his fifth in a row. This season, he led the young Illini team to their 10th Big Ten Championship in 11 years.

The team was without seniors this year after being led by Nick Hardy and Dylan Meyer last season. Without a senior presence, the Illini relied on performances from younger golfers like freshman Adrien Dumont de Chassart and sophomore Varun Chopra in the last weeks of the season.

Belgium-native Dumont de Chassart has been an important part of the team all season and tied for first in the Big Ten tournament, earning him his second team All-Big Ten.

Three other Illini golfers in total earned All-Big Ten honors, including juniors Michael Feagles, Bryan Baumgarten and Giovanni Tadiotto. Feagles was the only Illini golfer to earn first team All-Big Ten and did so by unanimous votes. Baumgarten and Tadiotto both earned second team.

Small and the team will head to the NCAA regional tournament May 13-15, where they will begin competing to try to win their first-ever NCAA title. In 2013, they were runner-ups behind Alabama but haven’t finished that high since.


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