WILLIAMSTOWN, MA – Williams College men's golf head coach Josh Hillman received some great news recently. His Eph team is one of 30 college teams invited to compete in the 47th Camp Lejeune Intercollegiate Golf Championship, March 22-25, in North Carolina, which will be played over the Ephs' first weekend of spring break.
A year ago Hillman's Ephs won the NESCAC Championship and advanced to the NCAA DIII Tournament, where they became the first NESCAC team to qualify to compete in all four rounds and finished 16th in a field of 42 teams.
"I'm very excited to be selected into this national tournament," stated Hillman. "The top 30 teams in the U.S. are invited and we are one of them! It will be a fanatic experience for the team to play alongside of America's real heroes (U.S. Marines) on their home course."
"After the 2017 NCAA Championship we decided to make every effort we could to get into more national events and this is a great one to be apart of," added Hillman. "Very exciting times for Williams men's golf.
The Camp Lejeune Intercollegiate Golf Championship is a 54-hole event conducted at Paradise Point Golf Course each year, usually during the last weekend of March.
The event was first held in 1972. Its purpose, in part, was to expose young college students to the military environment and conduct an event to foster interaction between the college and the active duty and retired Marines in the Camp Lejeune area.
The inaugural event, won by Duke University, consisted of five-player teams from twelve schools of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC). The format was unique; for the first two days, each team consisted of two college players from different schools and two Marines from Camp Lejeune. The format was best ball, with the collegians playing at scratch and the Marines receiving their handicaps. After the second day, the Marines concluded their event, and the colleges continued to play team and individual tournaments.
The format and size of the field remained the same for the next 20 years. In 1991, the field was increased to 19 college teams and one military team, comprised of competitively selected Marines from Camp Lejeune. In 1996 the field was increased to 30 colleges and two military teams. At this time, it became necessary to utilize both courses.
Paradise Point Golf Course History
The history of the golf courses at Camp Lejeune began with the arrival of a young Marine by the name of George Cobb in 1942. Cobb, who had recently graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in Landscape Architecture, was assigned to Camp Lejeune as an Engineering Officer, more specifically, as the Officer in Charge of Forestry & Roads. Of further interest, Cobb was a scratch golfer. When the idea to build golf courses for the recreation of the Marines stationed here was presented, George was put in charge of the project and given the title of Construction Superintendent. He enlisted the professional assistance of the Scotsman Fred Finley as the golf course architect.
The Gold Course (then just called "Number One") was completed in 1943. The Cobb experience at Camp Lejeune set the course for his life after the military. He went on to design many fine courses in the United States, including several in this area. He is best known for creating the famous par 3 course at Augusta National. The fortuitous arrival of George Cobb allows Paradise Point at Camp Lejeune to stake the claim as the oldest 18-hole golf course in the Marine Corps.