Men's Golf 15th After Opening Round At NCAA Regionals
May 18, 2006
TUCSON, Ariz. - Thursday's first round of the NCAA West Regional has come to a close at the Omni Tucson National Golf Course with the 17th-seeded Santa Clara University men's golf team sitting tied for 15th place. SCU shares the spot with Baylor and the University of Alabama after posting a team score of 289 (+1). After the opening round, the Broncos stand five strokes out of 10th place, the cut-off for advancing to the NCAA Championships.
The Broncos, competing in an NCAA Regional for the first time in school history, will return to the links for a 12:12 p.m. tee time in Friday's second round. All of the second-round action can be followed live on www.golfstat.com.
"I'm disappointed with our finish," said SCU head coach Robert Miller. "Holes 13-16 were rough and we gave up a lot of strokes. Everyone played decently and we finished in order. We need more production from the bottom of the order."
Santa Clara got off to a blazing start, shoot as low as seven-under as a team with only one of the quintet over par through the first 12 holes. Eric Lillibridge (-2) and Michael Nicoletti (-1), SCU's top two players after the first round, each birdied the opening hole and shot three-under through the front nine.
The Broncos recorded 10 birdies that counted towards their team score on the front nine, against only five bogies. But as Miller mentioned, the 13th-16th holes tripped up the quintet's momentum, as six total bogeys from the quintet slowed things down, with four of those bogeys counting against the team total, as only the four top scores from each school are counted in each round.
Lillibridge, though, finished the day tied for 23rd in the individual competition, shooting a two-under 70, only three strokes off of the overall lead. Nicoletti is right behind him with a one-under 71, while Jong Yoon is two strokes behind Nicoletti at one-over 73. John Colyar recovered from a rough start and battled back, riding a two-under 34 on the back nine to finish with a score of 75. Tim Lynch, despite a hot start, rounded things out with a first-round total of 76.
"I played well, today and was solid on the front nine," Lillibridge said of his performance. "I had a great par on No. 10 after I hit the it in the water, and I made a lot of pars and five-footers. I had some birdies on the back nine and held it together."
Florida finished the day at the top of the team leaderboard with a score of 273 (-15). Rounding out the top-three with the Gators are host Arizona at 279 (-9) and Fresno State with a score of 280 (-8).
Utah's Dustin Pimm, one of six individual golfers in the field, leads the individual competition after shooting a six-under 66. Florida's James Vargas, Billy Horschel and Matt Every, who each shot a five-under 67, trail Pimm. Nine players are tied at four-under.
First Round Results
1. Florida - 273 (-15)
2. Arizona - 279 (-9)
3. Fresno State - 280 (-8)
T4. BYU - 282 (-6)
T4. N.C. State - 282 (-6)
T4. Nevada - 282 (-6)
T7. Stanford - 283 (-5)
T7. Pepperdine - 283 (-5)
T7. UC Irvine - 283 (-5)
T10. Arizona State - 284 (-4)
T10. East Tennessee St. - 284 (-4)
T10. Loyola Marymount - 284 (-4)
13. New Mexico St. - 287 (-1)
14. Washington - 288 (E)
T15. Santa Clara - 289 (+1)
T15. Baylor - 289 (+1)
T15. Alabama - 289 (+1)
T18. New Mexico - 290 (+2)
T18. Louisville - 290 (+2)
T18. Cal Poly - 290 (+2)
T18. San Diego St. - 290 (+2)
22. Denver - 293 (+5)
23. Western Kentucky - 294 (+6)
24. Houston - 295 (+7)
25. Bucknell - 297 (+9)
26. San Diego - 299 (+11)
27. Jackson St. - 314 (+26)