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Eagle golfer rewrites record books

Friday, October 5, 2007  
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By Chad Hartwell

Bruno Buccolo claims to be a simple golfer from Argentina. This simple golfer recently won the Peaks Classic Golf Tournament and eight other tournaments while attending Oklahoma Christian University.

He has earned first team All-American honors the past three seasons while setting numerous Oklahoma Christian records.

“Bruno holds many Oklahoma Christian University golf records such as freshman scoring average 73.0, junior scoring average 71.3 and low 18 holes score (64),” Oklahoma Christian golf coach David Lynn said. “He is also only one tournament victory away from having the most individual wins for a career as well.”

With all these accomplishments, and solid play every day, Buccolo’s teammates know they are seeing something special.

“This is not something an average player is going to do,” teammate Sean Elliot said. “You have to be an amazing player to do something like that.”

Before winning the Peaks Classic, Buccolo was in somewhat of a drought. He won the tournament after going six starts without an individual victory.

“I was happy because I was the only player to finish under par in tough conditions,” Buccolo said. “I was happy with my playing but, above all, happy with my attitude to come back after a bad start.”

Three more golf tournaments are scheduled for fall and several more in the spring. Buccolo and his fellow teammates believe he will be in the running for the top spot in each of these tournaments.

“It is only a matter of how many tournaments he wins, because with his game he is in contention every week,” Lawson said.

Buccolo doesn’t shy away from the high expectations placed on him by his teammates. He understands as a leader of the team he needs to perform well for the Eagles to be successful.

“I know this is going to sound arrogant, but it is the truth. I go to every tournament knowing that it depends on my own game. If I play my best I am going to win or, at least, have a great chance,” Buccolo said. “This is how I feel and that is what I want all my teammates to feel if we want to win a national championship.”

Buccolo also came close to qualifying to play in this summer’s U.S. Open. He first qualified in Wichita, Kan. where only three-out-of-45 players moved on to the next stage. The second qualifying stage was in Dallas where the top three-out-of-35 players advanced to the Open. Buccolo came in 10th after shooting scores of 73 and 69.

“I played good, but not good enough to qualify,” Buccolo said. “The experience was great, and I was proud of myself because I was able to compete with a bunch of Nationwide Tour players.”

Buccolo plans to try to play professional golf after graduating.

“Bruno will be successful in whatever he decides to do after school,” Lynn said. “He carries a 3.8 GPA and is a two time NAIA Scholar-Athlete. He is a gifted player and will have the opportunity to play professionally both in the United States and around the world.”

Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina and raised in Tandil, Buccolo’s father is a doctor, and his mom teaches Italian. He has a brother in Italy and a sister at home working on her degree.

“I love the city, and I miss it a lot,” Buccolo said. “Of course every time I get a chance, I go back to see my family.”

Buccolo started playing golf when he was ten and has been playing for thirteen years.

“I got started because my dad took me. He started playing a couple of months before I did,” Buccolo said. “He took me to the course one day, and I started playing.”

In Argentina, Buccolo also played soccer and rugby.

“I used to play team sports before, like soccer and rugby, but golf took all my attention,” Buccolo said. “I broke my elbow playing soccer one day and decided not to play any more because it kept me out of the golf course for five months.”

As Buccolo continues to rewrite Oklahoma Christian’s record book, choosing golf over soccer seems like a smart move.

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