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Runner-up effort at NCCAA Championship nets Heartland award for Johnston

Sam Johnston tees off on No. 6 at The Hombre Golf Club on Tuesday, en route to a 5-under 67. Johnston was named Thursday as the Heartland Conference player of the week.
Sam Johnston tees off on No. 6 at The Hombre Golf Club on Tuesday, en route to a 5-under 67. Johnston was named Thursday as the Heartland Conference player of the week.

OKLAHOMA CITY (Oct. 24, 2013) – Sam Johnston’s second straight runner-up finish at the National Christian College Athletic Association Championship this week earned the Oklahoma Christian golfer the Heartland Conference men’s player of the week award Thursday.

Johnston, a sophomore from San Diego, shot a 3-under-par 213 in the event that ended Wednesday in Panama City Beach, Fla., at The Hombre Golf Club, which serves as one of the PGA Tour’s Q School courses. During one stretch of the second round, he had four consecutive birdies en route to a 5-under 67.

In earning NCCAA All-America honors for the second straight year, Johnston led OC to a fourth-place finish – extending to 15 academic years the program's streak of top-four national finishes in either the NAIA or NCCAA.

It’s the second time this fall and the fifth time in his career that Johnston has won the weekly Heartland award. He last received it in early October after winning the Western New Mexico Intercollegiate in Goodyear, Ariz.

OC golfers have taken the Heartland honor three times this fall, as Alasdair Dalgliesh also won it after sharing medalist honors in the Bill Ross Intercollegiate in Overland Park, Kan., last week.

Johnston finished the fall season second in the conference and tied for 12th in NCAA Division II in stroke average at 71.09.