Fourth-Ranked Bruins Travel East for NCAA Championship
May 29, 2007
The fourth-ranked UCLA men's golf team travels to Williamsburg, Va., for the 110th NCAA Men's Golf Championship, May 30-June 2. The tournament will be played at the Golden Horseshoe Golf Club (Gold Course), which carries a par of 70 over 6,803 yards.
The NCAA Championship is a 72-hole event, featuring 30 teams in a five-player, count-four format. After 54 holes, the field will be cut to the low 15 teams and the top six individuals. GolfStat.com will carry live results of all four rounds.
UCLA will be making its 29th appearance in the NCAA Championship, and fifth straight under Head Coach O.D. Vincent -- an accomplishment that is the sixth best active streak in the country. Under Vincent, the Bruins have recorded three Top 10 finishes, and were within six strokes of winning the title in 2004. UCLA won its only NCAA title in men's golf in 1988 under Hall of Fame coach Eddie Merrins.
'Our team will be ready for the national championship,' said Vincent. 'We were disappointed with our result at the West Regional, and we're prepared to play our best at the NCAA Championship.'
Although the Bruins set a school record with a 54-hole score of 822 (-42), they finished second in the West Regional on May 19 to unheralded South Carolina, which entered the tournament ranked 36th. The Gamecocks recorded their first victory of the 2007 season with a three-round total of 820 (-44).
The Bruins also set a single round school record by recording a score of 268 (-20) to take the first round lead on May 17. In addition, sophomore Erik Flores held the first round individual lead that day by firing a 64 (-8), the second-best score to par in school history.
Finally, junior Kevin Chappell was UCLA's top individual at the regional tournament, finishing in a tie for second with an impressive 54-hole total of 66-68-67--201 (-15). That score ranks third on the UCLA charts and marked Chappell's sixth consecutive Top 10 result.
'Kevin has been playing exceptionally well since his victory at the John Hayt Collegiate (in February),' said Vincent. 'He's beaten many of the nation's top players (in the last four months), and certainly deserves to be considered for All-America honors.'
UCLA's top individual NCAA finisher under Vincent was Travis Johnson, who placed fifth in 2004. Under Vincent, the 1999 National Coach of the Year, the Bruins have won 35 tournaments in nearly five years, a national leader. He has also coached 12 individuals who have won 15 tournament titles, including two that have won regional and Pac-10 titles. Sophomore Lucas Lee leads this year's team with four victories over two seasons and 74 career rounds.
In addition, Vincent's teams have twice broken the school record for the lowest 54-hole team score. Three of his players currently hold the school record for the best single round score in school history.
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