BEVERLY, Mass. – The Endicott men's golf team saw four of its student-athletes earn Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) All-Conference honors on Wednesday afternoon, as announced by the league office earlier today. Athan Goulos (Peabody, Mass.) and head coach Tom Smith highlighted the group with CCC Golfer of the Year and Coach of the Year accolades, respectively.
ALL-CCC FIRST TEAM
Goulos' CCC Golfer of the Year honor marks the third season in a row an Endicott student-athlete has won the award. Goulos earned CCC Golfer of the Year and All-CCC First Team honors by serving as the Gulls' No. 1 throughout the season and finishing with a 75.9 stroke average over 13 rounds of golf.
He also recorded four top-five finishes, including a medalist honor at the Elms Blazer Invitational, and was strong in both CCC events this year. Goulos tied for sixth in the CCC Fall Qualifier with a plus-six 78 and finished second in the CCC Championship with a plus-four 146. At the CCC Championship, he had the best round on day one with a plus-three 74 and shot a plus-one 72 in the final round.
Meanwhile, Palazzo produced a 78.94 stroke average alongside one first place finish, three top-5 placements, six top-10 rankings, and six top-20 performances. Palazzo's first place finish came at the Western New England University (WNEU) Invitational where the junior shot a 70 and topped the field of 49 competitors by two strokes. Palazzo also was the only student-athlete to shoot under par (-2) in the one-day tournament behind 11 pars, three birdies, and one eagle.
Lastly, Palazzo played the most rounds (18) of golf out of any student-athlete on the team and shot 85 or better in every single one of them, which included six rounds of 75 or better (70 season-low).
ALL-CCC SECOND TEAM
Benshoff compiled an 80 stroke average in addition to three top-10 finishes and five top-20 finishes. At the CCC Qualifiers, Benshoff finished tied for sixth overall behind a score of 78 and backed that up with an 11th place finish at the CCC Championship (77-80, 157).
Billings notched a 78.8 score average, one first place finish, two top-5's, three top-10's, and six top-20's to register a spot on the All-CCC Second Team. Billings' first place finish came in the opening tournament of the season for the Gulls as the sophomore shot 145 (72, 73) at the Bowdoin Invitational to lead Endicott to a second place showing out of 11 teams.
CCC COACH OF THE YEAR
Smith earned his fourth-consecutive CCC Coach of the Year honor after leading Endicott to the CCC title. The Gulls finished in the top-three in six of the 11 tournaments they played in this year including wins at the Elms Blazer Invitational and the CCC Championship. His golfers were also medalists at three events. Back in the fall, the Gulls finished sixth out of 20 teams at the NEIGA Championship.
Endicott will represent the CCC at the NCAA Tournament from May 16-19 at the Mission Inn Resort in Howey-in-the-Hills, Florida.