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Hall of Fame for LVR grad Matt Hopkins

first_imgBy Bruce Fuhr,The Nelson  Daily SportsUniversity seems such a long time ago for Nelson’s Matt Hopkins.However, Lindenwood University hasn’t forgot the impact the L.V. Rogers grad had on the Missouri institution.The university recently inducted Hopkins in to the Lindenwood Hall of Fame during the fall.Hopkins, a four-time all conference and all-region golfer, joined nine other individuals and three teams in the 2010 class.“It was a great honour to receive,” Hopkins told The Nelson Daily from Vancouver. “I hadn’t been back to school since I graduated in 2005 and it gave a chance for my family to see where I went to school as well, as they weren’t able to make it down while I was attending college.”Hopkins, 28, attended Lindenwood on a golf scholarship from 2002-2005 after graduating from L.V. Rogers High School where he was a standout on the Bomber golf team. During his four years the son of Matt Hopkins of Victoria and Sheila Hopkins of Nelson, helped the team win four-conference championships and participated in four national tournaments. Hopkins had 24 top-ten finishes and won three tournaments during his career.“It gave me a lot of pride to be honoured . . . anytime you recognized it feels great,” said Hopkins, who now works as an account manager in the ticket operations department for the Vancouver Canucks. “I felt great that people at Lindenwood remembered me, and my accomplishments to the athletic program . . .. Which is moving to NCAA Division II (in 2011).”As a freshman, Hopkins was the regional individual champion and led Lindenwood to a regional championship. The next year, Hopkins helped the team repeat as regional champions. In 2005, Hopkins finished in the top 15 at the national tournament and was named to the All-American team. He set a course record that year with a six-under-par 66 at the national championships.The induction ceremony was hosted by former Lindenwood grad Bob Ramsay, a radio personality from ESPN 101 in St. Louis.Each inductee had a chance to speak about their time at Lindenwood.  There was also the homecoming football game the following day, where all HOF inductees were recognized on the field at halftime.After graduation, Hopkins managed to get his tour card on the Canadian Professional circuit.Despite having the game to compete at that level, the 5’10” scratch player failed to get the financial backing to make it a go on tour.“The issue for me was always one of sponsorship,” admits the former Granite Pointe at Nelson golfer. “I was able to qualify for the Canadian Tour on my first attempt, but was never able to gain much in terms of help making a real go of it.  “I didn’t really have anyone that I knew that had been in the situation locally, so I found it tough to gain any traction.”Despite having to pull the plug on his professional career, Hopkins doesn’t want to forget the people that helped him get off the ground, albeit for a brief time.“To even get where I did I was pretty happy, but I would have been able to do it without a few people — my mom, my sister Shannon, my dad, Lauren Thast, Sandy Renwick, Murray Elias, Howie Hyssop and Grant Arcuri all come to mind,” Hopkins said. “Without those people the dream would have never even got off the ground in the first place.”Spoken like a true Hall of Famer.sports@thenelsondaily.comlast_img

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