Feature: Men's Golf In First Place

May 31, 2007

By Roxie Dickinson
The Stanford Daily

May 31, 2007

Stanford, CA (CSTV U-WIRE) -- The Stanford men's golf team dominated the first day of the NCAA Championships, finishing in the coveted top spot after a phenomenal performance in Williamsburg, Va.

The main contributor to the Cardinal was junior Rob Grube, who holds a two-stroke lead over a vicious pack of top collegiate golfers in individual competition.

As a team, the Cardinal fired an overall five-under-par score of 275. Stanford is three strokes ahead of a four-way tie for second between Florida, Coastal Carolina, Minnesota and Texas.

All teams hit the course again in tomorrow's second round of play.

'The rest of the tournament is going to be a real test of golf,' Stanford head coach Conrad Ray said. 'The guys felt really good about today's round. Conditions were a lot tougher since we were playing in the afternoon, but I think that we got really lucky that Rob had such a great round. We definitely have a lot of golf left, and the guys are really looking forward to tomorrow's round.'

If the NCAA Championships are a test, as Ray described, Grube certainly aced the preliminary exam. The junior stepped up his game yesterday, notching a six-under-par 64. He also picked up five of his six birdies on the front nine holes.

Florida's Tim McKenney is just two strokes behind and right on Grube' heels with a four-under-par 66.

'Rob really led the charge for us today,' Ray said. 'His score of 64 is pretty phenomenal on the golf course that we are using.'

Sophomore Daniel Lim also contributed to the Cardinal's great day on the Golden Horseshoe Golf Course by shooting a one-under 69, putting him in a tie for 15th.

Concluding the day in tie for 29th was senior Zack Miller, who goes into day two with a clean slate on an even-par 70. Just behind Miller was his senior teammate Matt Savage (72; two over par). Freshman Joseph Bramlett shot an eight-over-par score of 78 during his first round of play ever at the NCAA Championships.

In addition to the Cardinal's first successful day at the NCAA Tournament, all five Stanford golfers participating in the championship were selected by the Golf Coaches Association of America to be on the PING All-Region Pacific team as result of their exceptional performance throughout this past season.

Stanford has a lot to be excited about after its first day at the championships. The team has a bright-and-early tee-off time of 8:17 a.m., but that won't stop the Cardinal from coming out strong to defend its lead.

'Now that the grass is growing and the greens are warming up, conditions will only get more difficult over the coming rounds,' Ray said in a phone interview yesterday. 'We need to stay consistent and keep being a successive team. The team that wins is just going to go and get it. We can't rest on what happened today - we'll see what happens tomorrow.'

(C) 2007 The Stanford Daily via CSTV U-WIRE

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