Men's Golf Hosts 2009 Alister MacKenzie Invitational
Oct. 8, 2009
BERKELEY - BEARS HOST 2009 MacKENZIE INVITATIONAL: After a one-year hiatus, during which California hosted the Pac-10 Championship on the same course, the Alister MacKenzie Invitational is back at the Meadow Club with 15 teams competing over 54 holes with two rounds on Monday, Oct. 12, followed by a final round on Tuesday, Oct. 13.
THE EVENT: The Alister MacKenzie Invitational, hosted by the University of California, takes at the Meadow Club in Fairfax, Calif. Two rounds on Monday and a final-round Tuesday will be preceded by a College-Am tournament on Sunday. The Bears are paired with Oregon and Colorado State to begin play on Monday. The course, at par-71 and 6,686 yards, was designed by Dr. Alister MacKenzie. Current weather forecasts call for a 40 percent chance of showers on Monday and Tuesday. Live scoring will be available at Golfstat.com with recaps each evening at CalBears.com.
THE COURSE: Designed in 1927 by Dr. Alister MacKenzie, a Scottish surgeon and world-renowned course architect, the Meadow Club is located in the North Bay's Marin County, high above the town of Fairfax, near the Pacific Ocean. It has hosted 19 satellite fundraising events for Cal Men's Golf beginning in 1989. Meadow Club has also hosted the 2008 Pac-10 Men's Golf Championship (hosted by Cal), the 2001 US Open qualifying, the 1997 NorCal PGA Section Championship and the 1990 NCGA Junior Championship. Meadow Club is the oldest of the seven MacKenzie courses in the U.S. - the others are Cypress Point (1928), Valley Club (1928), Pasatiempo (1929), Green Hills (1929), Claremont (1929) and Crystal Downs (1933), the last being the only U.S. course he designed outside of California (Michigan).
DES SAYS: 'Good teams play their home course well and great teams have a tendency to run away from the pack,' said head coach Steve Desimone about the advantage of hosting the MacKenzie at Meadow Club, with its well-bunkered approaches and undulating greens. The challenge for coach Desimone and the Bears, with a first-, fourth- and 12th-place finish to open the fall season, is to play consistently up to their potential. 'With seven new players, I knew early on that we were going to go through some growing pains,' Desimone said. 'We're going through that now but I think this is going to become a very good golf team. Our qualifying rounds have been among the best we've ever had at the Meadow Club. It's a competitive field with teams from all over, with proud traditions. We're going to see some great golf.'
BEAR LINEUP: Cal's lineup (in order, with 2009-10 Cal statistics)
Player YR RDS STROKES AVG LOW TOP FINISHEric Mina Jr. 9 643 71.4 67 1Stephen Hale Jr. 9 649 72.1 63 2Michael Weaver Fr. 3 222 74.0 70 T30Chad Vivolo Jr. 6 436 72.6 68 6TBD
LINEUP LOOK: Juniors Eric Mina and Stephen Hale lead the charge into the MacKenzie for Cal after a scorching set of qualifying rounds that allowed the Bears to hone their games on the same course they will play Monday and Tuesday. Freshman Michael Weaver will play the second event of his Cal career, followed by Chad Vivolo, whom Desimone described as 'just starting to get comfortable with the course, including a 66 and 69 during qualifying.' The final lineup spot has come down to an end-of-Friday tossup between James Core and Brandon Hagy, another sign of the competition at qualifying. Said Desimone: 'It's not an exact science, but there's no question that some guys play some courses better than others. What you'd like to see is a combination of a history of playing the course well and then playing it well leading into the tournament.'
A LOOK AT THE FIELD: Fifteen teams will compete at the 2009 Alister MacKenzie Invitational. San Diego State returns after winning the last MacKenzie in 2007, joining Cal, which has won three of the past six (2003, '05 and '06); 2004 winner Oregon State; 2002 winner Fresno State; Colorado, Colorado State, Indiana, Minnesota, New Mexico, Oregon, San Francisco, San Jose State, UC Irvine, Washington State and Wisconsin.
AT THE 2007 MacKENZIE: San Diego State fired an 8-under 276 to go from seventh to first and win the 2007 MacKenzie. The Aztecs finished the event with a three-round 828 (-24). Washington finished second at 832 (-20), followed by UC Irvine (833, -19). Oregon and Fresno State tied for fourth at 836 to round out the top five. California finished in 12th place after shooting a 298. Louisville's Daryl Fathauer won the individual title with a 13-under 200, followed by Fresno State's Todd Angel (202, -11) and Aaron Goldberg (204, -9) from San Diego State. The Bears were paced by then-sophomore Evan Derian with a 7-under 206 to tie for 8th. Newcomer Stephen Hale fired a then-career-best 69 in the opening round and finished 2-under to tie for 28th.Current undergraduate volunteer assistant George Gandranata and then-sophomore Andrey Mindirgasov both finished at 3-over to tie for 50th. Senior Freddy Wolfe was injured early in the final round and withdrew after logging a 73-72 - 145 on day one.
LAST TIME OUT: Following their win at the Spartan Golf Classic, the Golden Bears exited rugged weather conditions at Skokie Golf Club with a 12th-place finish at the Windon Memorial on Oct. 5 as redshirt freshman James Coré recorded California's best round of the event, a 72, and was Cal's best finisher in his first competition for the Bears with a 10-over tie for 22nd. Junior Eric Mina suffered seven bogies en route to a final-round 77 and an overall finish of 12-over (T30), while classmate Stephen Hale ended two strokes behind Mina at 14-over (T42). Junior Evan Derian pointed his return to tournament play back in the right direction in Monday's final round with a 74 following a difficult second-round 84, and ended the event tied for 65th (+20). Freshman Curtis Loop finished in a tie for 74th at +24.