POSTED: Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - 12:27pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, October 16, 2012 - 6:36pm
The UTEP men’s golf team will host the inaugural Price’s Give ‘Em Five Invitational on Friday and Saturday, Oct. 26-27 at Butterfield Trail Golf Club. It marks the first home tournament for the Miners since the UTEP Intercollegiate was played at Fort Bliss Sunrise Golf Course in February of 1998.
“We want to make this an annual event,” said second-year Miner head coach Scott Lieberwirth. “Through hosting at a facility like Butterfield Trail, we should be able to attract some really good teams to our event. That in turn will grow our tournament and elevate our program.
“This is a winning situation for everybody involved, and it creates some excitement about UTEP Golf in the community, which we need. This is the first step towards getting our program back to where we want it to be.”
Thirty-six holes will be played on Friday, and 18 on Saturday. Teams will tee off on Friday at 8:30 am. Joining UTEP in the 12-team field will be Idaho, Nebraska, NM State, Northern Colorado, Oral Roberts, San Jose State, Seattle, Utah, UT Arlington, Weber State and Western New Mexico.
“UT Arlington always has a good team. They’ve gone to NCAA Regionals almost every year the last decade,” Lieberwirth said. “San Jose State is the defending WAC champion. We have had some good battles with NMSU over the years. And we’ve got some up-and-coming teams in our field in Northern Colorado, Idaho, Utah and Nebraska.
“The 12-team field is on the smaller side, but it’s a manageable number for us. In the future we want to grow the number to 15 or 16 teams. But overall I’m very happy with this year’s field, and I’m pleased that the coaches have committed to the tournament in a start-up year. I think they’ll have a great experience, and word will spread that this is a great event and we treat you well in El Paso.”
The tournament will be played at the par-72, 7,307-yard Butterfield Trail Golf Course. Designed by Tom Fazio and located just minutes from the El Paso Airport, Butterfield Trail was rated the third-best municipal course in the nation by Golfweek in 2010.
Teams participating in the Price’s Give ‘Em Five Invitational will conduct a golf clinic for Wounded Warriors on Thursday, Oct. 25 from 5-6 pm at the Butterfield Trail Golf Club Driving Range.
“Fort Bliss is an integral part of our community, and we have the opportunity to do something special by working with the Wounded Warriors,” Lieberwirth said. “Our tournament sponsor, Price’s Creameries, was 100 percent on board with doing this and we’ve gotten some help from key members of the Century Club [fund-raising arm of UTEP Golf] and the community to bring the event to fruition.
“It’s going to be a great experience for our guys to spend time with those who served our country. Hopefully it will be mutually beneficial in terms of introducing the game of golf to the Wounded Warriors while giving them the opportunity to offer some unique perspective to our student-athletes. I’m so excited to associate our tournament with this great cause.”