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Bearcats claim title at Rhode Island Invitational

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MIDDLETOWN, R.I. - Binghamton all but sealed its NCAA tournament berth by knocking off host and favorite Rhode Island and winning the 13-team Newport Invitational on Friday. The Bearcats fired a 299 to open up a 10-stroke lead after the first round, and Saturday's final round was washed out by rain, giving BU its sixth tournament title of the 2002-03 season.

Led by its two freshmen, Binghamton put three players in the top-10, and topped a strong field that included region rivals Hartford (313), Central Connecticut State (316) and UConn (317). The Bearcats will host the America East Championship at En-Joie GC Monday and Tuesday before awaiting word on an NCAA bid. The selections will be made on May 5, and the regionals take place on May 15-17.

At the 6,974-yard par 72 Newport National Golf Course, freshman Brad Moulton (Orangeville, Ontario) fired a 1-under 71 to tie for medalist honors among 70 golfers. It was his first individual title in what has been an outstanding first collegiate season. Moulton began his round with back-to-back bogies, but recovered to shoot 36-35. He made six birdies, including four on the back side (Nos. 11, 12, 14, 18). Moulton shared top honors with Rhode Island's Kenneth Fahey.

Classmate Kevin Crawford (Lockport, N.Y.), who has played outstanding golf since being inserted into the starting lineup three tournaments ago, tied for seventh after shooting a 75. Crawford, who has the team's second-lowest stroke average in the spring, made two birdies in his round.

Senior captain Adam Fuchs (Plainview, N.Y./Plainview-JFK) shot 76 to tie for 10th place, and junior Keith Hendrickson (Syosset, N.Y.) carded a 77. Junior Joe Kunz (Webster, N.Y.) had the drop score of 82.

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