Nick Dennis selected to All-Tournament Team
Loyola in third-place heading into Sunday's final round
Nick Dennis tied for second on individual leaderboard
Loyola heads to Florida for conference meet
Willenborg, Riner post top rounds for Loyola on final day
Loyola University Chicago alum Adam Kwiatkoski has successfully built both the Rambler men's and women's golf programs into contenders in the Horizon League and in 2012 guided the men's program to its first-ever NCAA regional berth after capturing the Horizon League Championship. Kwiatkoski has spent the last eight seasons as the head men's golf coach at his alma mater and under his direction, the Ramblers have established team- and individual-scoring marks for 18, 36 and 54 holes.
For over a decade, Kwiatkoski has been part of the Loyola golf program as coach of both the women's and men's teams. From 1999-2003, Kwiatkoski was the head women's golf coach at Loyola, helping build the Ramblers into a power in the Horizon League. In 2003, he guided Loyola to a second-place finish at the inaugural Horizon League Women's Golf Championship.
During Loyola's magical 2011-12 season, Kwiatkoski helped a youthful squad that featured just one senior develop into a championship squad. Led by sophomore Alex Cusumano, who blossomed into one of the top players in the conference, earning All-Horizon League honors, the Ramblers won three tournaments and became the first spring-sport program in Loyola history to reach NCAA tournament play.
Loyola's 2012 Horizon League Championship title came in dramatic fashion as Kwiatkoski kept his team focused after a tough first round. Bound and determined, the Ramblers came out on day two of the three-day tournament and wiped out a 13-stroke deficit to take a two-shot lead over Green Bay before maintaining that two-stroke edge through the final 18 holes on championship Sunday. Cusumano, freshman Nick Dennis, and sophomore Nick Willenborg all collected Horizon League All-Tournament Team recognition for finishing tied for sixth or better.
Kwiatkoski helped mold Dylan Gergen and Sean Collopy into two of the top golfers in the Horizon League in 2010-11, with Gergen earning All-Horizon League accolades for the first time in his career. In addition to recording five top-ten finishes, Gergen also was named Capital One Second Team Academic All-District V for his achievements in the classroom. Meanwhile, Collopy posted a career-best 75.6 stroke average, which ranked second only to Gergen (75.0) on the team. Both Gergen (tie-fifth) and Collopy (tie-ninth) secured top-ten showings at the 2011 Horizon League Championship.
During the 2009-10 season, Kwiatkoski helped Thomas Greene post the lowest single-season scoring average (73.3) of any player in the history of the Loyola program, while the team finished second or better in three meets, including a first-place tie at the rain-shortened Butler Spring Invitational. Greene collected All-Horizon League honors, and after finishing tied for third at the Horizon League Championship, was named to the All-Tournament Team. In addition to success on the course, which also included Gergen being a three-time Horizon League Men's Golfer of the Week honoree, the team posted the highest grade-point average (3.39) of any men's squad at Loyola.
In 2008-09, Kwiatkoski helped the Ramblers to seven finishes of fourth place or higher, including a fourth-place showing at the Horizon League Championship and the team title at the IPFW Fall Classic. Armando Favela closed out his career in style, earning All-Horizon League honors for the third time in four seasons, while also claiming Loyola's Male Athlete of the Year accolades. Off the course, Sean Bidzinski was named ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District V for the second consecutive season.
The Ramblers experienced success both on and off the course in 2007-08 as the team earned three, top-three team finishes including a first-place showing at the Loyola-hosted Caputo Invitational in April. For the second straight season, Favela picked up All-Horizon League honors as well as Horizon League All-Tournament status after placing sixth at the League Championship. In May 2008, the left-handed Favela made a name for himself on a national level by winning the men's independent division at the 22nd PGA Minority Collegiate Championship at The PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Fla., then later that summer qualified for the U.S. Amateur Championship in Pinehurst, N.C.
The 2006-07 Ramblers placed fourth at the Horizon League Championship, but were a mere four strokes out of second place. Favela captured All-Horizon League honors and turned in what was then the lowest single-season scoring average (73.6) in Loyola history, only to be bettered the next season (73.4). In addition, Greene burst onto the scene and finished fourth at the Horizon League Championship. Loyola golfers carded six rounds below 70 during the course of the season.
In 2004-05, his first year as the head men's coach, Kwiatkoski helped four Ramblers post scoring marks below their career average and four of his pupils fired rounds of 70 or lower.
A highly regarded crop of newcomers paid huge dividends for Kwiatkoski in 2005-06, as the rookies were ranked among Golfstat's Top 25 Freshman Class Impact Rankings. Under Kwiatkoski's tutelage, Bidzinski earned Horizon League Newcomer of the Year honors and also captured All-Horizon League accolades. Both he and Frank Linquist placed among the top six finishers at the Horizon League Championship to earn All-Tournament Team accolades. Those two helped Loyola improve its showing at the Horizon League Championship by four spots to tie for third place, then the best showing in school history.
The Ramblers also claimed their first-ever Division I tournament title by winning the IPFW Fall Classic as Bidzinski established then school records for rounds of 18 holes (65) and 54 holes (205). That season's talented recruiting class featured the individual state champion from Illinois and was also recognized as one of the Top 25 Freshman Impact Classes by Golfstat in October 2006.
Kwiatkoski has also helped develop professional players and his work with Favela helped turn the lefty into a member of the Canadian Professional Golf Tour and in 2012 he competed in his first-ever PGA event, the Mayakoba Golf Classic at Riviera May-Cancun.
Off the course, the Ramblers have been just as successful under Kwiatkoski, posting the highest grade-point average of any men's team at Loyola in four of the past six seasons.
A 1994 Loyola graduate, Kwiatkoski is the General Manager of Willow Hill Golf Course in suburban Northbrook, Ill. He and his wife Tammy (also a 1994 Loyola graduate) have three daughters, Abbey, Mia, and Emma.