Smits, Wilner Sweep State Golf Titles for Wolf Pack

By: Ben Ross - Email
By: Ben Ross - Email

It's been quite a summer for the Wolf Pack golf program. After senior Nicholas Smits won the Nevada State Amateur championship last month, Pack head coach Jacob Wilner followed that up by winning the Nevada State Match Play championship this week.

"It's certainly pretty special," Wilner said. "It's something that (Nicholas) and I talked about beforehand because I knew he was playing in the state stroke play and I was going to play in the match play."

"I think it's wonderful really because we've got two of the biggest trophies in the state in Reno on campus, and it doesn't really get any bigger than that," said Smits.

In addition to Smits and Wilner winning trophies, graduating senior Josh Baskins also found success this summer, advancing all the way to the final 16 at the U.S. Public Links championship. He'll now be a volunteer coach for the Wolf Pack.

"I think he's a perfect fit for this program this year because he's just a quiet, humble guy who does his job and wants the best for the program," said Smits.

"It's certainly a good advertisement, on the website and here doing a shoot today, and NGA," said Wilner. "I think it's good all around."

And Smits isn't done. This weekend he's heading to Atlanta to play in the U.S. Amateur Championship.

"I'm really excited," said Smits. "(It's) my first USGA event, and to have my mom on the bag and my brother and sister are going to be there, it's great.

"It's just a huge event," said Wilner. "If you look at the history of who's won it, it's pretty much the who's who of golf, with Nicklaus and Woods and Palmer. It's an awesome accomplishment for him to get in the field... We'll be watching, a couple of us, Coach (Mike) Paul and myself, and I'm sure some of our players will be keeping an eye on him. We'll try to leave him alone during the week because he's got a lot going on with family and just getting ready for the golf course, but with live scoring, you can essentially update your phone as fast as you want to."


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