Bruins Tee It Up Wednesday at NCAA Men's Golf Championship
May 30, 2006
The fifth-ranked UCLA men's golf team prepares to compete in the 106th NCAA Men's Golf Championship, May 31-June 3 at Crosswater Golf Course in Sunriver, Ore.
Thirty teams will compete for the Division I team and individual championship. The field also includes six individuals from each of the three regional sites, who are joining the field to compete for individual medalist honors.
The University of Portland will serve as the host institution.The tournament format consists of 72 holes of stroke play over four days. The Crosswater Golf Course will play to a par of 72 over 7,630 yards.
UCLA will be making its fourth straight NCAA Championship appearance and 28th overall. The Bruins qualified from the East Regional, where they finished seventh at the Lake Nona Golf Course. The East Regional appearance was the Bruins' first in the 14-year history of their regional participation.
In their 28 appearances, the Bruins have won the national championshiponce -- in 1988 at North Ranch Country Club in Westlake Village. Their highest finishes since then were second in 2004 and third in 2003.The Bruins enter the 2006 national championship tournament with their highest ranking since 2004. They have also won 11 tournaments this season, second most in school history and two shy of the school record set by the 1981-82 team that won 13 titles and finished sixth nationally.
'The (East) Regional was a great learning experience for us,' said Head Coach O.D. Vincent. 'Quite honestly, we didn't play well the first two days. We played great on the last nine holes, and that will give us some momentum for the NCAA Championship.
'I like our chances (in the NCAA Championship),' Vincent continued. 'We have a renewed sense of energy going into the last tournament of the year.'
Under Vincent's guidance, the Bruins have won 30 tournaments since 2002. Included in that total are two NCAA Regional Championships and two Pac-10 titles. In addition, 11 UCLA players coached by Vincent have won 13 individual titles during his tenure. Finally, Vincent has been voted Pac-10 Coach of the Year three times, twice at UCLA (2003 and '06), and once at Washington (1999). He also was voted national Coach of the Year in 1999.
The Bruins will make one lineup change from the regional event: freshman James Lee will replace Lucas Lee in the fifth spot. Junior Chris Heintz, sophomores Daniel Im and Kevin Chappell, and freshman Erik Flores will remain in the lineup.
'Lucas has had a little better season, but James has played better of late,' Vincent said.
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