Men's Golf Posts Bests Score Of Day But Falls Three Shots Of Title
April 15, 2007
Arizona State fired the best round of the day, but the Oregon men's golf squad finished as the wire-to-wire winner of the 16-team field at the 35th annual ASU/Thunderbird Invitational held at the ASU Karsten Golf Course (par 72/7,057 yards). The Ducks finished at 20-under 844 (277-279-288).
ASU shot 5-under 283 in the final round Sunday, the best final round by any team, to close at 17-under 847 (281-283-284) and finish second. The Sun Devils entered the tournament having won its last tournament, the National Invitational held at Omni Golf Club in Tucson April 2-3.Oregon's prior best team finish in the Thunderbird Invitational was fourth in 2002 with a 21-under 843 and that also was its lowest score (both total and in relation to par). Derek Sipe shot a 12-under 204 (65-66-73) to lead the Ducks and finish second. Oregon's best Thunderbird individual finish prior to this year was a third-place finish by Chris Carnahan in 2002 (11-under 205) and a tie for third by Gregg LaVoie in 2005 (even-par 213).
New Mexico's Charlie Beljan shot 66-67-68 and won the tournament with a 15-under 201. He led the Lobos to an eighth-place finish at 7-under 857 (291-277-289). He missed by two strokes the low total score record set by Kansas State's Ben Kern last year as Kern shot a 199 on the par-71 layout (14-under par). Beljan's 15-under-par is tied for the third-best score in relation to par for the tournament, as ASU's Alejandro Canizares in 2006 and TCU's Bret Guetz in 2002 both shot 16-under 200 in the current par-72 format.
USC, ranked fourth nationally entering the tournament by Golfstat, finished third at 15-under 849 (278-285-286). Tenth-ranked Texas A & M finished fourth at 14-under 850 (282-279-289).Arizona, the 2006 Thunderbird Invitational champion, finished fifth at 12-under 852 (287-277-288) while UNLV, ranked sixth by Golfstat, ended sixth with a 10-under 854 (285-284-285).
Host Arizona State, who has won the tournament five of the past ten years (1999-2001 and 2003-2004) and 13 times overall, was led by senior All-American Niklas Lemke who tied for fifth with an 8-under 208 (72-67-69). Lemke, the 2007 National Invitational Tournament medalist (in Tucson on April 2-3) and 2006 Illini Invitational medalist (from the fall) now has seven top-five finishes in nine events on the year.
Sophomore All-American Benjamin Alvarado Holley finished seventh at 7-under 209 (68-71-70). Alvarado Holley now has four top-10 finishes in nine events on the year.
Senior Fredrik Andersson, who shot a collegiate best 3-under 69 in the first round, finished at 1-under par 215 (69-74-72) and tied for 23rd. Freshman Knut Borsheim finished at 4-over 220 (72-71-77) and tied for 48th. Sophomore Steele DeWald finished at 6-over 222 (76-74-72) and tied for 55th.
ASU fielded a maroon squad that finished 12-over 876 (297-294-285), as freshmen Tristan Bierenbroodspot finished at 2-over 218 (73-72-73) and tied for 37th, sophomore Erik Coover finished tied for 45th at 3-over 219 (71-73-75) and sophomore Ryan Kelley finished at 6-over 222 (75-73-74) and tied for 55th.
Sun Devil freshman James Dalthorp shot a final round 4-under 68 and finished at 8-over 224 (78-78-68). He posted seven birdies and an eagle on the par-5 14th (527 yards). Senior Phil Telliard shot a 2-under 70 in the final round and finished at 10-over 226 (80-76-70).Complete results can be found at golfstat.com.
PAST THUNDERBIRD INVITATIONAL CHAMPIONS: Notable past champions of the event include Scott Simpson of USC (1975), Corey Pavin of UCLA (1979), 1983 NCAA champion Jim Carter of Arizona State (1984), Phil Mickelson of Arizona State (1991 and 1992), 1993 NCAA champion Todd Demsey of Arizona State (1995), 2000 U.S. Amateur champion Jeff Quinney of Arizona State (1999) and 1999 and 2000 English Amateur champion and three-time Pac-10 champion Paul Casey of Arizona State (2000), who also earned 2001 European Rookie of the Year honors.
NEXT UP FOR ASU: ASU next competes in the Pac-10 Championship April 23-25 at Eugene Country Club in Eugene, Ore. It has won the Pac-10 title 11 times, including six straight championships from 1995-2000 under current ASU coach Randy Lein. The NCAA West Regional will be held May 17-19 in Tempe again at Karsten Golf Course while the NCAA Championships will be held May 31-June 3 in Williamsburg, Va. ASU is a five-time champion of the NCAA West Regional and won the NCAA championship in 1990 and 1996.
PAC-10 TO BE COMPETITIVE: When ASU travels to the Pac-10 Championship April 23-25 in Eugene, the competition will be among the best. According to Golfstat, Stanford is the top-ranked team in the nation, while USC (fourth), UCLA (fifth) and ASU (18th) all are in the top 25.
CONFERENCE CALL: Five conferences were represented at the tournament, as there are five schools from the Pac-10 (ASU, Arizona, California, Oregon and USC), five from the Big 12 (Baylor, Kansas State, Oklahoma, Texas A & M and Texas Tech), three from the Mountain West (New Mexico, San Diego State and UNLV) and one each from Western Athletic Conference (Fresno State) and Conference USA (UCF).
THUNDERBIRD INVITATIONAL RECORDS
TEAM TOTAL SCORE1. Arizona State 43-under 821 in 20042. Arizona State 40-under 824 in 20033. Arizona 22-under 830 in 20064. UNLV 21-under 831 in 2006T5. Arizona 32-under 832 in 2004T5. USC 32-under 832 in 2003T5. Texas 32-under 832 in 2002
INDIVIDUAL TOTAL SCORE1. Ben Kern (Kansas State) 14-under 199 in 2006T2. Alejandro Canizares (Arizona State) 16-under 200 in 2004T2. Bret Guetz (TCU) 16-under 200 in 2002T4. Charlie Beljan (New Mexico) 15-under 201 in 2007T4. David Schultz (TCU) 15-under 201 in 2003T4. Jeff Quinney (Arizona State) 15-under 201 in 1999T7. Henry Liaw (Arizona) 11-under 202 in 2006T7. Ryan Moore (UNLV) 14-under 202 in 2004T7. Aaron Bengoechea (Pacific) 14-under 202 in 1989T10. Chez Reavie (Arizona State) 13-under 203 in 2004T10. John Klauk (Texas) 13-under 203 in 2002
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