Norman, Okla. - Lynn University head men's golf coach Andrew Danna was named the Dave Williams National Coach of the Year presented by Golf Pride Grips for Division II as announced by the Golf Coaches Association of America on Wednesday morning. This is the first national coach of the year recognition for Danna, second for the men's golf program and the 17th overall for the Fighting Knights.
"I am truly humbled to be recognized among some of the top coaches in the nation," said Danna. "This honor is a testament to our student athletes and coaching staffs hard work."
The 2017-18 men's golf season will go down as one of the greatest in school history as the team defeated top-ranked West Florida 3-2 in match play to claim the program's first NCAA Division II National Championship. The national title comes on the heels of the Blue and White finishing as the national runner-up three times previously under Danna (2017, 2015, 2013) and four overall (2011).
Along the way to a national title, Lynn broke program records for lowest 54-hole total (826 – FAU Spring Championship), average stroke average (72.45) and team stroke average. In addition, the Fighting Knights finished in the top-five in 10 of their 12 tournaments and had at least one individual place in the top-10 in nine events.
Danna's team extended their NCAA record (Division I and II) streak of match play appearances to seven and national match play finals appearances to five.
Lynn was the only school to place two individuals in the top-10 of stroke play at the national championship (Toto Gana & Manuel Torres) while in match play Carlos Bustos went toe-to-toe and beat the second- and third-ranked individuals in Division II while posting a combined 10-under par against his opponents.
This is the first national coach of the year award for Danna and second for the men's golf program after former head coach Eric Abreu earned recognition from the NAIA following Lynn's 1996 national crown. The Fighting Knights have 17 national coach of the year selections, most recently head men's soccer coach John Rootes in 2014-15.
Oklahoma State's Alan Bratton was honored as the Division I recipient while Methodist's Steve Conley received Division III recognition. Oklahoma City's Kyle Blaser, Indian Hills Nathan Weant and Mississippi Gulf Coast's Tommy Snell were selected for NAIA, NJCAA DI and NJCAA D2. All six recipients claimed national championships.
Lynn returns four starters from its national championship squad for 2018-19, including Gana and Bustos to go along with former national freshman of the year Felix Kvarnstrom and freshman All-American Jorge Villar.