April 24, 2017

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MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. – Hunter Richardson and Austin Swafford, both upperclassmen at the University of Tennessee at Martin, were spotlighted tonight as members of the 10-man All-Ohio Valley Conference golf team as voted on by the league’s head coaches.

The All-OVC team was announced this evening at the league banquet following the first round of the 2017 OVC Championships. This marks the third consecutive year that Richardson has claimed All-OVC honors while this is the second time that Swafford has earned an OVC postseason accolade, as he was also crowned as the league’s 2014 Freshman of the Year.

Richardson joins former teammate Brendon Caballero as the only Skyhawks to achieve All-OVC status in three straight years. One year after clinching OVC medalist honors, the junior out of Clarksville, Tenn. led the league in scoring average (71.2) and won four tournaments in 2016-17. He established a new program record for most adidas OVC Player of the Week accolades (five) in a single season while finishing in the top-eight in nine out of 11 tournaments. He won the Skyhawk Fall Classic (Oct. 3-4), F&M Bank APSU Intercollegiate (Oct. 17-18), Samford Intercollegiate (Oct. 31-Nov. 1) and the TSU Big Blue Intercollegiate (April 10-11), entering the 2017 OVC Championships with seven career tournament victories. Richardson’s low rounds of 68 came in the second round of the Murray State Invitational (Sept. 12) and in the second round of the Grover Page Classic (March 13).

“Hunter’s record over the last three years speaks for itself,” Skyhawk head coach Jerry Carpenter said. “He’s a very good player that works extremely hard to get better each and every day. Not many like him come along too often and we look forward to having him back next year as well.”

A senior out of Lebanon, Tenn., Swafford becomes just the seventh golfer in UT Martin history to garner All-OVC honors. He ranked ninth in the conference with a 73.2 scoring average while nabbing five top-six tournament finishes. He finished second in the Murray State Invitational (Sept. 12-13) and the SIUE Derek Dolenc Invitational (Sept. 26-27) for the best finishes of his collegiate career. He carded a season-best 68 in three separate rounds in 2016-17, accomplishing that feat in the Murray State Invitational second round (Sept. 12), the SIUE Derek Dolenc Invitational second round (Sept. 26) and the Loyola Intercollegiate first round (Feb. 25).

“Austin is a four-year starter for us and has been a leader for our golf team on the course and in the classroom,” Carpenter said. “He’s an exceptional young man and it’s been a privilege to coach him for four years.”

UT Martin looks to repeat as OVC champions when the Skyhawks play Round 2 of the 2017 OVC Tournament on Tuesday, April 25 before Round 3 starts on Wednesday, April 26 at The Shoals course on the Robert Trent Jones Trail.

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