Men's Golf Heads To The Bay Area For Pac-10 Championships

April 24, 2008


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SEATTLE, Wash. - Washington men's golf will head to Fairfax, Calif., for the 2008 Pac-10 Championships, Monday, April 28, through Wednesday, April 30. The tournament, hosted by the University of California, will be held at the par-71, 6,686-yard Meadow Club.

The three-day tournament includes a 72-hole format with 36 holes to be played Monday and 18-hole rounds played on Tuesday and Wednesday. Teams will consist of six players with the five low scores counting towards each 18-hole score. Both team and individual champions will be crowned at the conference tournament.

Staggered tee times from both the first and 10th holes begin on Monday at 7:30 a.m. and on Tuesday and Wednesday at 8 a.m. Washington has been paired in the first group with UCLA which will start the opening round Monday from the first tee at 7:30 a.m. and the second round at 12:30 p.m. Third and fourth round team pairings for Tuesday and Wednesday will be determined by the previous day's team standings. Live scoring for the tournament will be available at golfstat.com.

The Huskies have finished fifth or higher at the Pac-10 Championships each of the last five years, winning the conference crown as recently as 2005. Washington was the Pac-10 runner-up in 2006 and placed fifth at last year's event (13-over 1,453). Alex Prugh was UW's top individual finisher last year, placing 16th (even-par 288).

Washington's lineup for the tournament will include senior Zach Bixler (Richland, Wash.), sophomore Nick Taylor (Abbotsford, B.C.), sophomore Darren Wallace (Langley, B.C.), junior John Wise (Bellevue, Wash.) and freshman Kevin Spooner (West Vancouver, B.C.).

The Huskies played at the Meadow Club earlier in the fall at the Alister Mackenzie Invitational where they tallied their season-best team performance versus par - 20-under 232. That same tournament also saw Bixler become the sixth player in collegiate history and the second Husky to shoot 60.

Like always, the Pac-10 Championships will showcase many of the top teams and individuals in the nation. Four Pac-10 teams are ranked in the latest Golfweek/Sagarin Index Top-25 including No. 3 USC, No. 4 UCLA, No. 7 Stanford and No. 22 Arizona State. Two of the top-four ranked individuals also hail from the Pac-10 including No. 3 Jamie Lovemark of USC and No. 4 Kevin Chappell of UCLA. Also ranked in the Top-20 are No. 6 Rory Hie from USC, No. 10 Sihwan Kim from Stanford and No. 19 Erik Flores from UCLA.

USC is the defending team champion, winning the 2007 Pac-10 title just five strokes shy of the tournament record. Trojan Jamie Lovemark took home 2007 medalist honors, winning the title by one shot over Arizona State's Niklas Lemke.

The Huskies are coming off an 11th place finish at the U.S. Intercollegiate hosted by Stanford (50-over 890). Bixler was Washington's top individual tying for 25th at 7-over 217.

Noting The Huskies
Pac-10 History: Washington has won four Pac-10 Championship titles, the most recent coming in 2005...UW also won a Pac-10 crowns in 1988, 1963 and 1961...three Huskies have won individual Pac-10 titles including Erik Olson (2005), O.D. Vincent (1988) and Clint Names (1961).

Pac-10 Experience: Only two of the six players in the Husky lineup have previous experience playing at the Pac-10 Championships - senior Zach Bixler and sophomore Nick Taylor. Bixler's best finish was a 17th-place effort in 2006 and he also a freshman on the 2005 squad that won a Pac-10 title. Taylor played at his first conference tournament as a freshman last year, tying for 44th.

Bixler Enters The Record Books: Washington senior Zach Bixler etched his name in the record books back in the fall when he became the sixth player in collegiate history to shoot 60. Bixler's effort not only matched an NCAA record but matched a Husky school record as well. Former four-time All-American Brock Mackenzie also shot 60 in 2003. Bixler carded an 11-under 60 during the second round of the Alister Mackenzie Invitational hosted by Cal at the Meadow Club on Oct. 8, 2007. His record-matching performance included sinking an eagle and nine birdies. Bixler was named the Pac-10 Co-Golfer of the Month (October/November) for his efforts.

Strong Start: The Huskies got off to a strong start in 2007-08, finishing as the runner-up at their first two tournaments of the fall. UW was the runner-up at its own Husky Invitational (Oct. 1-2) before going on to finish second at the Alister Mackenzie Invitational (Oct. 8-9) hosted by Cal at the Meadow Club. Bixler was the Huskies' top individual in three of the first four tournaments. He matched a career-best finish with his own runner-up standing at the Husky Invitational.

Standout Senior: Zach Bixler is the Huskies' only senior on a young roster that also features one junior, two sophomores and two freshmen. Bixler has been Washington's top finisher at five tournaments this season, including the most recent event - last week's U.S. Intercollegiate at Stanford. Bixler is second on the squad with a 73.53 stroke average, carding three rounds in the 60's and six rounds under par during his final campaign.

Top Dawg Taylor: Sophomore Nick Taylor has emerged as one of the top players on the Husky squad this season. Taylor, who won the 2007 Canadian Men's Amateur title this past summer, leads UW with a 73.06 stroke average and has placed as Washington's top finisher at five tournaments - including three straight. His season-high finish came at the UH-Hilo Invitational where he finished in a tie for sixth place with a career-low score of 9-under 201. Taylor has fired six rounds in the 60's and 11 rounds under par.

UW To Host NCAA West Regional: Washington will serve as the host for the 2008 NCAA West Regional at Gold Mountain Golf Club in Bremerton, Wash., Thursday, May 15, through Saturday, May 17. The NCAA Regional field will be announced on Monday, May 5.

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