Nov. 16, 2004
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A pair of two-time high school All-Americans - Matt Savage and Nicholas Smith - have signed National Letters of Intent to play golf and earn a first-rate education at Florida State University it was announced today by Head Men's Golf Coach and Director of Golf Operations Trey Jones. Smith is the nation's 11th ranked prep golfer while Savage is the 35th ranked high school golfer nationally. Both players will begin playing golf and attending class during the fall semester of the 2004-05 academic year.
Both Savage and Smith have been very successful during their high school and junior golf careers and will compete immediately for spots in the Seminoles' starting lineup.
Savage (Louisville, Ky./St. Xavier), the 2004 Kentucky High School Boy's State Champion, is the No. 1 ranked junior in the state of Kentucky and won that state's Mr. Golf Award in 2004. He was the runner-up in stroke play competition at the 2004 Junior Amateur Championship at The Olympic Club in San Francisco, Calif. Savage has earned six top-20 AJGA Tournament finishes and earned medalist honors at the Ringgold Telephone Company Junior Classic in 2004. He shot his career-best single round score of 66 twice - one of which was a course record at the 2003 United States Junior Championship. Not only is he a talented golfer but his outstanding character helped him earn the AJGA Sportsmanship Award in 2004.
"Matt is one of the toughest junior golfers in the country," said Jones. He is one of those players who loves to compete and finds a way to win. He won the Kentucky State high school championship as he birdied the final two holes of the event and shot an amazing score of 30 over the final nine holes to win an AJGA event last summer. Matt strength's are his competitive nature and his tremendous putting abilities."
Smith (Ocala, Fla./Belleview) is the seventh ranked senior high school golfer in the nation in 2004 and the top ranked prep player in the state of Florida. He earned All-America Third-Team honors in 2004 and Honorable Mention All-America honors in 2003. Smith has earned eight top-10 AJGA Tournament finishes including a pair of tied for fifth place finishes at the Rolex Tournament of Champions and the HP Boy's Junior Championship in 2004. Smith carded his career-low score of 67 at the Rolex event and has carded seven rounds of sub-70 scores in the last two years. He carded back-to-back scores of 69 as he finished in a tied for third place at the First American Title Avila Junior Classic in 2003.
"Nicholas is certainly an impact player," said Jones. "The impact he will have on our team becomes evident when you take a look at his performances on tough golf course in elite junior golf invitationals. His strength is his composure and his ability to control the flight of the ball."
The groundwork for the Seminoles' future is beginning to brighten as the signings of Savage and Smith bring to three the number of AJGA All-Americans signed by Jones in his first 15 months at Florida State. Florida State's schedule was ranked as the nation's 15th toughest during the fall season as they competed against the best teams in the nation. The Seminoles open their spring season at the Gator Intercollegiate Feb. 5-6.