Nov. 5, 2012
WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - Sophomore Michael Kim has been named the Pac-12 Men's Golfer of the Month for October. Kim earned the honor for the first time in his career and has become the second consecutive Cal player to be selected to begin the 2012-13 season. Cal players have won the honor four of the last six times it has been awarded dating back to February of 2012, with Max Homa being selected for both February and September, while Brandon Hagy picked it up in April.
"I'm very proud of Michael and pleased for him," head coach Steve Desimone said. "He's a tremendously hard worker and a great player. He's followed up his freshman year the way we had hoped, and that is by actually playing better than he did a year ago. He's on the path that we really like to see, and we're confident that things are only going to get better. To have both players of the month so far this season in Michael and Max Homa certainly reflects the great golf we've played. Both guys are really deserving of the awards that they've won."
Kim had an incredible month in October to lead the top-ranked Cal men's golf team to victories in each of its three tournaments to finish the 2012-13 fall season unbeaten for the first time in school history. The Golden Bears' five consecutive victories in the fall are already only one shy of the school-record six events won by the 2011-12 team. Dating back through all of the 2011-12 season, Cal has won 11 of its last 19 events and finished in the top five in all 19. The Bears reached the NCAA semifinals a year ago after winning their first Pac-12 Championship and NCAA Regional team titles along the way.
Kim won his first collegiate tournament at the prestigious Isleworth Collegiate Invitational (67-72-73 - 212, -4) in the team's final event of the fall, pulling off a clutch second shot out of a fairway bunker on the 18th hole of the third and final round to save par and hang on to a one-stroke individual win and two-shot team victory. Kim finished among the top six individually in each of the month's three events, also tying for fifth at the Alister MacKenzie Invitational (64-71-69 - 204, -9) and tying for sixth at the first annual Pac-12 Preview (71-69-70 - 210, -6). He was also Cal's top player at the Pac-12 Preview.
Kim finished the fall campaign with a team-low 70.1 stroke average, finished in the top-10 in each of the team's five events, and was either the team's top finisher or shared the honor three times. He also posted the lowest round of his collegiate career with the seven-under 64 he carded in the first round of the Alister MacKenzie Invitational. Kim finished the fall as the third-rated golfer nationally according to Golfweek with a 68.47 rating. His 331 total victories over individual opponents were more than any other player in the country (331), while he also posting the highest win totals in the nation against top-25 (23), top-50 (47) and top-100 (83) competition.
"I'm just glad I was able to help the team win all of our tournaments in the fall," Kim said. "I just hit the ball really consistently, and my low rounds at the MacKenzie and Isleworth were because I made some putts."
Cal will return to action January 28-29 for the first tournament of the spring portion of its 2012-13 schedule with the Arizona Intercollegiate at Arizona National in Tucson.