Men's Golf In First After Three Rounds At Pac-10 Championships

April 27, 2004

Arizona State sophomore Alejandro Canizares, the 2003 NCAA champion, fired a 6-under 66 Tuesday to help the Sun Devils build a nine-stroke lead after three rounds of the 2004 Pacific-10 Conference Men's Golf Championships at The Gallery at Dove Mountain.

'I played well today,' said Canizares. 'I putted well and hit a lot of fairways. I think I only missed two or three. I started to put well on the back and started to get the rhythm of my swing back. I think I need to shot a good four-under par tomorrow. If it's windy it will be tough.

Canizares' third-round tally was the low of the day and proved to be the difference as Arizona State separated itself from the 10-team field, posting a four-under-par total of 356. The Sun Devils' 54-hole total stands at 1,076 (-4), nine strokes ahead of tournament-host Arizona (1,085), UCLA (1,087) and Washington (1,106).

'We always enjoy playing Arizona,' said ASU head coach Randy Lein, who has led ASU to seven Pac-10 titles. 'When they play well we definitely have to play well. We were able to finish with some good shots and we're playing well. They've been in there in every tournament (Chez Reavie and Alejandro Canizares) and we've had four other guys that will keep us in it.'

Defending champion UCLA made the biggest move of the day, as the Bruins carded an eight-under 352 to shave four strokes off its deficit entering the round. Led by Travis Johnson (68/-4) and defending individual medalist John Merrick (69/-3), UCLA used four rounds at par or better to post just the fourth under-par team total of the tournament.

The Sun Devils seek their 12th Pac-10 championship since joining the league in 1978-79 and its first since 2000.

The Gallery continues to provide a stern test as just nine players are below par heading into Wednesday's final round. Canizares, the 2003 NCAA individual medalist, and teammate Chez Reavie share the third-round lead with seven-under 209 totals. UCLA's Johnson and Arizona's Henry Liaw are tied for third place two strokes back at 211 (-5).

The Pac-10 Championships conclude Wednesday at The Gallery at Dove Mountain, a par 72, 7,435-yard layout. The conference championship is determined by teams of six players with the low five scores for each round counting toward the team total.

Complete Round Three ResultsTeam Standings1.  Arizona State	1076 (-4)2.  Arizona 	        1085 (+5)3.  UCLA	        1087 (+7)4.  Washington	        1106 (+26)5.  USC	                1113 (+33)6.  California	        1120 (+40)7.  Oregon	        1125 (+45)8.  Oregon State	1148 (+68)    Washington State	1148 (+68)10. Stanford	        1170 (+90)

Top ASU IndividualsT1. Alejandro Canizares, 71-72-66=209 (-7)T1. Chez Reavie, 69-70-70=209 (-7)T17. Mike Derminio, 70-77-74=221, +5T17. Jesse Mueller, 72-75-74=221, +5T21. Niklas Lemke, 81-70-72=223, +7T41. Kendall Critchfield, 75-76-79=230, +14

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