Memphis Heads West for NCAA Golf Championships
May 25, 2012
MEMPHIS, Tenn. -The University of Memphis golf team is set to travel to Pacific Palisades, Calif. to compete in the NCAA Championships for the second time in school history. Memphis fought back from a back nine deficit to finish fifth in the NCAA Bowling Green Regional and secure a berth in the 2012 NCAA Championships on May 29 - June 3 at Riviera Country Club.
This is the first appearance for Memphis in the NCAA Championships since 1988 when All-American Steve Metz led the Tigers. Memphis finished 28th that year.
Jonathan Fly led the Tigers with a program best NCAA Regional finish of tied for third to help Memphis advance. He carded a 54-hole total of 211 (-5) to lead the Tigers. Jack Belote finished with a 75 en route to a tied for 19th finish and a 54-hole total of 220. Will Pearson, who led the Tigers with a 69 in round two, tied teammate Grant Milner in round three with a 76. Pearson finished in a tie for 26th, while Milner landed in 57th. Steve Lee fired round of 76-76-73 for a tied for 40th showing.
The Tigers will tee it up in the first round at historic Riviera Country Club on Tuesday, May 29 and play with UAB and TCU. Grant Milner will tee off at 8:10 a.m. off hole No. 10, and the rest of the players will follow sequentially in 10-minute intervals.
Riviera Country Club is a par 71, 7,013-yard championship golf course located in the Pacific Palisades community within greater Los Angeles. The course has hosted the PGA Tour's Northern Trust Open (also known as the Los Angeles Open) in addition to the 1948 U.S. Open. Riveiera has also hosted the PGA Championship in 1983 and 1995.
30 teams - five from each of the six regional sites - will play 54 holes of stroke play at Riviera. At the end of the 54 holes, an individual champion will be crowned and only the top eight teams will advance to a match play playoff.
The eight teams will play a straight match play competition with the number one team after 54 holes of stroke play facing the number-eight team, number-seven will play number-two, number-six will play number-three and number-four will face number-five. The winners advance to the Final Four, then the two winners will play for the national championship on the final day.
Each match will be worth one point. A match that is tied after 18 holes will be awarded a half-point. If the team score is tied after the completion of all five matches, a playoff using the combined strokes of all five players from an extra hole will decide the winner. If there still is a tie, the playoff would continue to another hole until there is a winner.
This was the fourth appearance in NCAA postseason play for Memphis and the first time advancing to the NCAA Championships since moving to the regional format. Tigers finished tied for 20th at the 2008 NCAA East Regional at Council Fire Golf Club in Chattanooga, Tenn. Robbins was named 2008 C-USA Coach of the Year during that season. Last season, Memphis finished in 11th position at the NCAA Central-Indiana Regional.
The Tigers advanced to the finals at NCAA Championship for the only time in school history in 1988 when they were led by All-American Steve Metz. Memphis finished 28th in the championship.
Memphis' best accomplishment in the NCAA Championship came in 1955, when former Tiger Hillman Robbins won the Individual Title. Robbins led the 1954-55 Tigers to a 9-2 match record and was named as an alternate to the Walker Cup Team.
Teams and individuals advancing to the 2012 championships finals are listed below.
University of Georgia Golf Course - Athens, Ga.
Grandover Resort-East Course - Greensboro, N.C.
University of Michigan Golf Course - Ann Arbor, Mich.
The Club at Olde Stone - Bowling Green, Ky.
Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club - Norman, Okla.
Stanford Golf Course - Stanford, Calif.
Augusta State won the 2011 NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championships, capturing its second consecutive national title. Augusta State defeated Georgia 3-2 in the final round of match play competition. At the end of three rounds of stroke play LSU's John Peterson shot a 5-under-par 211 to capture the individual title. The tournament was held at Karsten Creek in Stillwater, Okla.