Share This Page

Bangor follows in father's footsteps to NCAA D-III golf championships

| Monday, May 13, 2013, 7:36 p.m.
Carnegie Mellon Athletics
Sewickley Academy graduate and Carnegie Mellon junior Ian Bangor helped lead the Tartan men's golf team to a second-place tie at the University Athletic Association Championship on March 11, 2013, at Red Tail Country Club in Sorrento, Fla.

His father and grandfather will walk with him when Carnegie Mellon junior Ian Bangor plays in the NCAA Division III men's golf championships.

That is not the only way in which the tournament that starts Tuesday in the Florida panhandle will be a family affair.

Paul Bangor played in the NCAA Division III championships in 1985, and Ian, like his father, received an at-large bid. They are the only two players in school history to qualify for the Division III men's golf championships as individuals.

“It was a really nice surprise,” Paul Bangor said. “I'm glad he got an opportunity to play in the event.”

Ian Bangor received one of five invitations after leading the Tartans with a 73.8 scoring average and winning three times this season.

The Sewickley Academy graduate will take plenty of confidence into the season-ending tournament. Improvement in his ball-striking has dovetailed with a short game that always has been one of his biggest strengths.

“I've improved a lot, especially my consistency,” said Bangor, a Moon resident. “My swing mechanics in general have gotten a lot better.”

Bangor played a practice round on each of the courses at Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in Destin, giving him one advantage his father didn't have in 1985.

Paul Bangor received an 11th-hour invite to the tournament held at Monroe Golf Course in Rochester, N.Y. He learned about it the day before it started — and on the same day that he had to be out of his dorm room at Carnegie Mellon.

By the time he took care of that and drove to Rochester, he had time to grab only a couple hours of sleep. And that's not all.

“I got a speeding ticket,” recalled Bangor, a lawyer in Pittsburgh.

He recovered from early difficulty while playing a course he had never seen to shoot 75 and 72 in the final two rounds.

One trait Bangor's son seems to have inherited is the mental toughness to overcome less-than-ideal circumstances.

“If he hits a bad shot, he just kind of figures out how to recover, and he's really unflappable,” Carnegie Mellon men's golf coach Rich Erdelyi said. “I think that's his biggest strength, his ability to stay in the moment. Young golfers, I think, have trouble doing that. He's really special in a lot of ways.”

Bangor also excels away from the course, which is one reason he won't play a lot of competitive golf this summer.

He leaves for New York City at the end of the month for an internship at BlackRock, an investment firm.

Bangor, who has a 3.85 grade-point average while majoring in business with a minor in economics, said the opportunity was too good to pass up. He will try to stay sharp by hitting balls during the week and playing on the weekends.

“I'll be back for all of August, so I'll get to play in a couple of things,” Bangor said of his summer golf schedule. “I think I need to go out and get some work experience.”

He will get valuable golf experience this week; he needs to play well enough in the first two rounds to make the cut. It helps that Bangor is rolling it as well on the greens as he has all season.

“I feel good,” he said, “and it's all starting to come together.”

Scott Brown is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at sbrown@tribweb.com or via Twitter @ ScottBrown_Trib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.