Rafferty to debut as Mehaffey returns for second Arnold Palmer Cup

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Caolan Rafferty. Image by Ernest Blignault

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Arizona State’s Olivia Mehaffey and Maynooth University’s Caolan Rafferty have been selected to compete at the prestigious Arnold Palmer Cup at Lahinch Golf Club from July 3-5, 2020.

Banbridge star Mehaffey returns to the tournament ranked 16th on the Women’s Amateur Golf Rankings and has become an integral member of ASU’s team

Dundalk ace Rafferty will make his debut at the event. He is ranked 19th in the Men’s charts and has already shown plenty of form this year after picking up two top-10s at the GUI’s recent trip to South Africa.

The committee selections for the Arnold Palmer Cup were announced on Golf Channel’s Golf Central at the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard at Bay Hill Club & Lodge. Three men and three women per side were named.

On the International side, Ireland’s Mehaffey and Matthias Schmid of Germany (Louisville) both make their second appearance in the Arnold Palmer Cup. Four newcomers join Mehaffey and Schmid in Ingrid Lindblad (LSU/Sweden), Pauline Roussin-Bouchard (South Carolina/France), Rafferty and Ludvig Aberg (Texas Tech/Sweden).

“As Assistant Men’s Coach for the International team this year at Lahinch, I am delighted that both Caolan and Olivia have been awarded committee selections,” said Barry Fennelly, Golf Manager of the Paddy Harrington Scholarship Program at Maynooth University.

“Their experience and proven track record at major links championships is second to none and I know that they will make a big contribution to the International team. From an Irish viewpoint, I am thrilled that Ireland has both a male and female representative on the team, it will be a huge honour for all of us to be part of such a prestigious International event that is the Arnold Palmer Cup.

“I have no doubt that many spectators and Irish golfing fans will come out in force to support us and get behind the International team.”

Fennelly, who has played a big part in the development of Caolan Rafferty, who’s now in his final year at Maynooth, was particularly thrilled that another member of the program had earned selection to the prestigious event.

“From a Maynooth perspective, I am personally thrilled to have a representative on the International side,” Fennelly added.

“Caolan has proved that he is a world class player through his rise in the world amateur golf rankings in recent years and I am delighted he is getting rewarded with this opportunity.

“Caolan becomes the fourth Paddy Harrington golf scholar at Maynooth University to compete in the Arnold Palmer Cup. Maynooth have now been represented at six of the last eight stagings of the Arnold Palmer Cup, a feat not matched by any institution outside of the United States.”

There could be yet more good news for Ireland with Wake Forest’s Mark Power in the mix to gain automatic selection via the APC rankings which will be finalised on March 26.

The Kilkenny amateur brilliantly picked up his first individual collegiate title for the Wake Forest men’s golf team in the stroke play competition of the iconic East Lake Cup last year.

Meanwhile, the United States team is led by a pair of returners in Emilia Migliaccio (Wake Forest) and Kaitlyn Papp (Texas), who will become the second and third Americans to play in three Arnold Palmer Cups, as the duo has combined to contribute 11.5 of a possible 16 points the past two events. Joining Migliaccio and Papp on the American side will be Ricky Castillo (Florida), Kaitlin Milligan (Oklahoma), John Pak (Florida State), and Davis Thompson (Georgia).

For both the men and women, the six Arnold Palmer Cup Ranking selections will be announced on Golf Channel on March 25th along with two additional committee picks for the United States (one of which will be a non-Division I golfer) and one additional committee pick for the International side.

About Arnold Palmer Cup

The Arnold Palmer Cup was co-founded by Arnold Palmer and The Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) and began at the Bay Hill Club & Lodge, Orlando, Fla., in 1997. The event is a Ryder Cup-style tournament featuring the top men’s and women’s university/college golfers matching the United States against a team of International players.

The Arnold Palmer Cup has been played at some of the world’s greatest courses including The Old Course, The Royal County Down, Royal Portrush, Baltusrol, The Honors Course, and Cherry Hills. The 2018 matches at Evian Resort Golf Club became the only major tournament which features men and women playing side-by-side as partners.

Since its inception, over 100 former Arnold Palmer Cup alumni have gone on to earn cards on either the PGA Tour, European Tour or LPGA, 29 have represented Europe or the USA in the Ryder Cup or Presidents Cup, and more than 60 have claimed over 240 victories on the PGA or European Tours. The United States leads the series 12-10-1.

The Arnold Palmer Cup is supported by Arnold & Winnie Palmer Foundation. The Arnold Palmer Cup provides a platform for perpetuating Arnold Palmer’s commitment to youth development and the growth of amateur/collegiate golf.  For more information, please visit ArnoldPalmerCup.com.

Maynooth University – Arnold Palmer Cup representatives (2013-2020)

2013: Gary Hurley (Europe) match played at Wilmington, Delaware, USA

2015: Gary Hurley (Europe) match played at Rich Harvest Farms, Illinois, USA.

2016: Stuart Grehan (Europe) match played at Formby, England

2017: Stuart Grehan (Europe) match played at Atlanta Athletic Club, Georgia, USA

2018: Ronan Mullarney (International) match played at Evian Resort Golf Club, France

2020: Caolan Rafferty (International) match to be played at Lahinch, Ireland (July 3-5, 2020)




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