USC Moves into Lead at Pac-10 Men's Golf Championships

April 29, 2008

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FAIRFAX, Calif. - It took a team effort and a poor memory on the part of USC to ride out the wind in round three of the 2008 Pac-10 Men's Golf Championship. The Trojans attempted to forget their rollercoaster performance from Monday and start fresh at the Meadow Club Tuesday morning.

Freshman Matt Giles led the Trojans into the top spot, posting a 3-under 210 (69-70-71). Giles excelled at keeping the ball down despite the wind, earning second place along with five other golfers, just one stroke back of the day's leader, Kevin Chappell of UCLA. USC coach Chris Zambri was impressed with Giles' steady play, remarking that the interesting weather 'really fits right in' to the Aussie's game, since the wind blows such much more in Australia.

'I think he could be competitive in any weather, but probably the more it blows the more of an advantage he's at.'

Coming into Tuesday No. 3 USC (338-374-357) struggled to find a consistent groove on the green, notching a 17-under after the first round and a 19-over in the second. 'The course is really really tricky right now,'

Coach Zambri said. 'It's easy to lose your mind out there. We might have lost our minds a little bit yesterday and I just think they learned a little bit from yesterday's second round about keeping your composure.'

Indeed round three brought the Trojans back to their game as sophomore standout Jamie Lovemark also had a strong day, finishing at 1-under 212(66-75-71) to give him the tie for eighth place just three strokes behind the leader.

After yesterday's unpredictable back-to-back rounds, Coach Zambri told his team to make sure they never gave away a shot because of another shot. 'As long as you can say that to yourselves--that you mentally you didn't give up strokes--I'm not going to be upset if you played poorly.'

To earn the day's best individual performance, Chappell (70-68-71) shot a 4-under 209, but the Bruins struggled overall, falling from 1-under on Monday to 16-over 1081. Chappell continues to make his presence known in the collegiate golfing world, as he already is on the watch list for the2008 Jack Nicklaus Award.

The rest of the standings were as follows:
Arizona State is second at 6-over 1071 (354-361-356) while host Cal dropped to third at 14-over 1079 (346-362-371). UCLA stands at fourth(348-361-372) and Stanford fell to fifth at 22-over 1087 (350-357-380).Washington is tied for sixth at 29-over 1094 (357-367-370) with Oregon State (354-366-374). Rounding out the final teams is Arizona at eighth with a 30-over 1095 (354-360-381), Oregon is ninth at 31-over 1096 (359-363-374), and Washington State finished last with 61-over 1126 (369-380-377).

Coming into today's play, freshman James Byrne of Arizona State was tied for 20th place and five strokes back of the leader, Rob Grube of Stanford.After a stellar performance, Byrne shot a four-under-par to sit at 3-under 210 going into the final round. Anchored by the strong play of Byrne (71-72-67), the Sun Devils stormed back to take the second place spot, sitting just two strokes behind USC.

Play resumes Wednesday at 8 a.m. with the final round of action.

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