Husson University's Eric Dugas and Chris Kauppila earned Player of the Year and Rookie of the Year honors, respectively, by virtue of their performances at the 2019 North Atlantic Conference (NAC) Men's Golf Championship on October 12th and 13th at the Waterville Country Club in Oakland, Maine. Thomas College head coach Don Roberts was selected as the Coach of the Year, and Jacob Erwin of Castleton University was selected as the Senior Scholar Athlete after the championship event.
In addition to the four major conference awards, eleven student athletes earned All-Conference honors. The championship medalist and the next five finishers were named to the First Team All-Conference, and the next five finishers comprised the Second Team All-Conference.
The NAC Men's Golf Sportsmanship Team is reserved for those who distinguish themselves through demonstrated acts of sportsmanship and ethical behavior. The nine honorees positively affect the men's golf culture and match environment, and clearly demonstrate sportsmanship and integrity beyond golf rules and etiquette.
Player of the Year
Eric Dugas (Pittsfield, Maine) - Husson University
Eric Dugas earned 2019 NAC Men's Golf Player of the Year and Medalist honors with a 36-hole score of 145 at the 2019 NAC Championship. Dugas charged to the lead on day two after completing the first round five shots behind the leader and seven over par. His day-two score of 68 (2-under par) was the best single round of the weekend. He was 1-under par on the front nine, and 1-under on the back nine as well. Overall, Dugas made par on 22 holes and knocked in five birdies. He led the field on par five holes with a 3-under 4.25 average. Prior to the championship, Dugas earned NAC Player of the Week honors (September 2-8, 2019) for earning Medalist honors for the first time in his collegiate career at the Bowdoin Invitational, where he also made a comeback to win on the second day of the tournament.
Senior Scholar Athlete
Jacob Erwin (Port Dover, Ontario) - Castleton University
Jacob Erwin is the 2019 NAC Men's Golf Senior Scholar Athlete. Erwin carries a 3.78 GPA as an Athletic Training major while being a two-sport student athlete (men's golf and men's ice hockey). He has been named to the Dean's List each of his six semesters at Castleton. Erwin has been a key member of the Castleton golf team for each of his four years, and carried a career-best 77.0 scoring average this season - more than two strokes better than his previous best year. At the 2019 NAC Championship, Erwin led the field after the first eighteen holes with a 2-over par 72. He finished the tournament tied for second with a combined score of 147. He made par on 23 holes and logged three birdies over the weekend. He tied for the best score on par 4 holes (4.13 average) during the championship. Prior to the NAC championship, Erwin earned medalist honors at the MCLA Trailblazer Invitational, and earned Player of the Week honors (September 23-29, 2019) for the performance.
Rookie of the Year
Chris Kauppila (Newburgh, Maine) - Husson University
Husson University first-year Chris Kauppila had the best rookie performance of the 2019 NAC Men's Golf Championship and earned Rookie of the Year honors. Kauppila finished fourth overall with a two-day score of 150. He tied for the best average score on par four holes with 4.13, and logged an even 5.0 average on par fives. Kauppila made par 20 times and tied for the most birdies of the weekend with five. Prior to the championship, he twice earned NAC Rookie of the Week honors - first for his top-twenty finish at the 25-team Williams College Fall Invitational (September 9-22, 2019), and then for his top-ten finish at the Farmingdale State Invitational (September 23-29, 2019), carding 149 in both 36-hole events.
Coach of the Year
Don Roberts, Thomas College
Don Roberts of Thomas College is the 2019 NAC Men's Golf Coach of the Year. After a few seasons (2010-2012) without a men's golf program at all, the Thomas team returned at the club level in the fall of 2013. Roberts joined the Thomas staff that fall and has steadily built the men's golf program from a young club to a conference contender. In only the second year of a return to varsity NCAA status, Thomas finished third overal at the 2019 Championship with consistent and steady play, and a two-day combined score of 618 (309, 309). Roberts placed two golfers in the top 11 to earn All-Conference Honors. Junior Evan Parsons finished fourth to earn First Team recognition, and first-year teammate Kent Johnson tied for 7th place and earned Second Team honors. Another rookie, Aaron Pion, was the first Thomas golfer to earn NAC weekly honors since 2007 - which he did with a medallist performance the week prior to the NAC Championship. This is the first such conference honor for Roberts, who has accumulated a number of awards from Golf Digest and the Maine PGA over the course of his long career.
2019 NAC Men's Golf All-Conference Teams
|Eric Dugas||Pittsfield, Maine||Junior||Husson||145|
|Daniel Christy||Canton, New York||Junior||SUNY Delhi||147|
|Jacob Erwin||Port Dover, Ontario||Senior||Castleton||147|
|Evan Parsons||Woolwich, Maine||Junior||Thomas||148|
|Chris Kauppila||Newburgh, Maine||First-Year||Husson||150|
|Alex Fisher||Great Valley, New York||Senior||SUNY Delhi||151|
|Kent Johnson||Carmel, Maine||First-Year||Thomas||152|
|Nicholas Ojala||Pittsford, Vermont||Sophomore||Castleton||152|
|Zach Barrett||West Winfield, New York||Junior||SUNY Delhi||152|
|Josh Marshall||Syracuse, New York||Sophomore||SUNY Canton||153|
|Brandon Palmer||Norfolk, New York||Junior||SUNY Delhi||154|
|Player of the Year||Eric Dugas||Pittsfield, Maine||Junior||Husson|
|Rookie of the Year||Chris Kauppila||Newburgh, Maine||First-Year||Husson|
|Senior Scholar Athlete||Jacob Erwin||Port Dover, Ontario||Senior||Castleton|
|Coach of the Year||Don Roberts||Thomas|
|Josh Marshall||Syracuse, New York||Sophomore||SUNY Canton|
|Nick Ojala||Pittsford, Vermont||Sophomore||Castleton|
|Alex Fisher||Great Valley, New York||Senior||SUNY Delhi|
|Dexter Wright||Columbia, Maine||Junior||UMaine-Farmington|
|Eric Dugas||Pittsfield, Maine||Junior||Husson|
|Kaden Swett||Brownington, Vermont||Sophomore||NVU-Johnson|
|Logan Peacock||West Gardiner, Maine||Senior||Maine Maritime|
|Jordan Hanscom||Lincoln, Maine||Junior||UMaine-Presque Isle|
|Isaac Salisbury||Freeport, Maine||Senior||Thomas|