UTPA Baseball team to host golf tournament Jan. 22
Posted: 01/18/2005
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The University of Texas-Pan American Bronc Baseball team is hosting the Second Annual Baseball Scholarship Golf Tournament Saturday, Jan. 22 at the Monte Cristo Golf Course and Country Club in Edinburg.

- Jim Hickey
This year, the tournament will feature a celebrity guest, current Houston Astros pitching coach and former UTPA Bronc standout Jim Hickey, who was a first-team All-American pitcher in 1983, and helped the Broncs to a school-record of 63 wins and a spot in the NCAA tournament.

In 1983, he also set Bronc pitching records with 16 wins and 16 complete games that still stand today. Hickey was named pitching coach for the Astros in July 2004 and helped lead them to a National League West Division Title this past season.

"Jim Hickey is a great person who played here and had a great experience as a Bronc. The opportunity to play here put him in a position to be successful academically and to pursue a professional baseball career. When our alumni look back to see where they got their start, most of them are willing to come back and help the program they were a part of during their time as student-athletes," UTPA Broncs Baseball Coach Willie Gawlik said.

Hickey will be available to sign autographs, take pictures with tournament participants and in addition take part in the live and silent auctions to be held during the event.

The money raised from the tournament will help fund the UTPA Baseball scholarship program.

"The goal of the tournament is to raise enough money to clear at least $14-16,000 for the baseball scholarship program to be fully funded as allowed by the NCAA," Gawlik said. "The NCAA I maximum scholarship awards are at 11.7 for the 30-man roster. The additional funds raised allow the Broncs to be at a scholarship level comparable to other major universities. We have a roster of 30 players and usually all receive partial athletic awards. No one receives a full award for baseball."

Last year the Broncs' strength of schedule was rated number 17 out of 287 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division l baseball programs. This was one of the highest ratings in the program's history. The Broncs' 2005 schedule will again rank high among the nation's elite NCAA Division l baseball programs. The UTPA Broncs begin their season Feb. 4.

Sponsorship levels for the golf tournament range from $200-$1,750. The three-man scramble tournament will begin registration at 7:30 a.m. with a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m.

A buffet breakfast and lunch will be included. A silent and live auction of sports memorabilia will be held. Prizes will also be awarded to the first, second and third place finishers.

For more information or to become a sponsor, call Gawlik at 381-2235.