BERKELEY, Calif. (Feb. 5, 2013) -- Cal now has both the top-ranked team and individual in the nation as sophomore Michael Kim has moved to No. 1 in the current Golfweek collegiate player rankings. Kim is the first Cal player to ever top the list and was also named the organization’s Player of the Week on Monday after sharing individual medalist honors with teammate Joël Stalter at the Arizona Intercollegiate played last Monday and Tuesday.
“To have both the top-ranked team and top-ranked individual player is quite an accomplishment for this program and is really great to see,” head coach Steve Desimone said.
“It’s a cool feeling being the No. 1 collegiate player,” Kim said. “The hard work I’m putting in is paying off, but it’s only the first half of the season. There’s still a lot of work left and for now, I’m trying to get better each day and help this team win a national championship.”
The Arizona Intercollegiate victory in the team’s first event of the 2013 spring season was the second in a row for Kim, who finished the 2012 fall campaign with a win at the Isleworth Collegiate Invitational. Kim fired a final-round six-under par 65 in his third at final round at the Arizona Intercollegiate to come from five shots off the pace and catch Stalter for a share the title. Kim has finished in the top 10 in each of his six events this season and has a 69.7 stroke average that is third nationally.
Kim is also a candidate for the Haskins Award and on the watch list for The Ben Hogan Award, both given annually to the nation’s top collegiate player. In addition, he is atop the current Palmer Cup rankings.
“From the moment he came to Cal, we knew he could play,” head coach Steve Desimone said. “He understands how to play, works really hard and, frankly, after last year and the past fall this is no surprise. The good news is there’s still more room for growth. He’s only going to get better, and I’m certainly glad to have him on our side.”
Cal will next play Feb. 20-22 at the John A. Burns Intercollegiate hosted by Hawai’i on the Arnold Palmer Course at the Turtle Bay Resort in Kahuku on the North Shore of Oahu. The Bears are the two-time defending champions of the event and have won 11 of their last 20 tournaments overall dating back to the beginning of the 2011-12 campaign while finishing in the top five in all 20. Cal remains one victory away in 2012-13 from equaling the school record of six tournament wins set last season.