MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. - The No. 27 North Texas men's golf team is playing their best golf of the season, and it comes at the right time as they begin their quest for their first Sun Belt Conference title since the 2003 season on Monday.
The Mean Green, ranked No. 27 in the nation by Golfstat.com and No. 29 by Golfweek, has finished in the top-five in seven straight events and eight of the nine tournaments this season. North Texas is going after its 28th overall conference title in program history.
Carlos Ortiz is the defending Sun Belt Conference champion, having won the title last season with a 7-under par 137. He is looking to become only the second golfer in North Texas history to win multiple conference titles, joining Jimmy Clayton who won the Missouri Valley Conference title in 1966 and 1968. Ortiz can become the only golfer in school history to win back-to-back conference titles.
The North Texas surge into the conference tournament has been led by Ty Spinella and Curtis Donahoe. Donahoe is coming off a his best tournament of the year at the All-American Intercollegiate where he shot the lowest three-round score for a North Texas golfer at par-72 course since 1998.
After struggling in the fall, Spinella has found his form and taken it to another level. He has two straight top-10 finishes and four sub-70 rounds in his last nine rounds.
Stalwarts Ortiz and Rodolfo Cazaubon have been steady for North Texas all season and the duo looks for a third-straight all-conference selection. There have been only four players in North Texas history to earn three-time all-conference honors.
North Texas is trying to erase the memory of a second place finish last season in the rain-shortened conference championship. Denver beat North Texas to capture the title, while the Mean Green finished tied with ULM for second place.
The 2012 championship is being played at the Robert Trent Jones Shoals "Fighting Joe" course, which will be playing at over 7,300 yards. Live scoring can be found at www.golfstat.com.