TU extended its historic golf season on Monday when three Night Hawks were named NAIA All-Americans.
Senior Sam Jackson was selected to the first team, and juniors Stone Cowie and James Fletcher were awarded second team honors.
“I was really surprised actually,” Jackson told the Times-Enterprise. “I knew I had an OK season, but to get that award makes it seem like a pretty strong year.”
Jackson led Thomas to a 12th place finish at last weekend’s national tournament at LPGA International in Daytona Beach, Fla.
Jackson was the low medalist in the Sun Conference Tournament, which TU won as the fifth seed, and named the league’s Player of the Year.
Cowie and Jackson were both pegged to the All-Conference team as well, and Peter Ireland was named the league’s Coach of the Year.
TU’s berth in the NAIA Tournament was its first ever in the 12-year history of the program.
“I don’t think any of us expected to have the year we did,” Jackson said. “What made it really fun for me was the team we had; just a lot of good guys that were really committed to getting better. ... It made it a lot of fun to be on the road playing golf with them.”
Ireland believes that the team will only improve next season, as Jackson is the lone senior he’s losing to graduation.
“Obviously it’s going to be hard to replace a guy like that,” Ireland said last weekend. “But I think we have a solid core of players that are really going to grow from this experience.
Jackson will be competing this summer in a series of pro tours, including Moonlight Tour in Orlando and the West Florida Golf Tour.
He hopes to one day contend for a spot on the PGA.
“I’m confident in my ability,” he said. “I think I have the skills necessary and the right support team around me.”