Trojans Take Lead After NCAA West Regional 2nd Round

May 16, 2008


As day one morphed into day two at the 2008 NCAA Championships West Regional and the separation for the top 10 spots needed to advance to the NCAA final became more distinct, the No. 2 USC men's golf team played cool and loose.

And when the final putt was sunk during the 30-team, 156-player second round, the top-seeded Trojans were alone in first at 2-under 574 (291-283) after a 5-under effort on Friday (May 16) at the Gold Mountain G.C. in Bremerton, Wash.

Back in Los Angeles, it was graduation day on the USC campus. But that's an event for seniors, people the current Trojan five playing in Washington don't have. The squad of one junior, two sophomores and two freshmen were all under par and appear on their way to securing USC's fifth NCAA final berth in its last six years (in Troy's 38th straight NCAA appearance).

Long after USC had hit the clubhouse, host Washington briefly pulled ahead of USC, but by day's end, Troy was back at the top of the leader board. Oregon (579) is second, Clemson is third (580), UCLA and Washington are tied for fourth (585), Arizona State is sixth (589), Pepperdine, Kentucky and Stanford are tied for seventh (593) while Wisconsin is 10th (593).

Trojan sophomore Rory Hie is fifth at 2-under 142 (72-70) after a 2-under second round. The Trojans began play off the 10th hole on Friday and Hie birdied the first two holes. He bogeyed the 16th hole and did the same on 2nd to drop back to even. But he got back in the red with birdies on 6 and 7 as he angles for his third win this season and seventh top 10 finish. He is four strokes back of leader Joey Benedetti of Oregon.

Sophomore Jamie Lovemark and junior Tom Glissmeyer are tied for sixth at 1-under 143 after identical first and second rounds (72-71). Lovemark had a nice and quiet day, with birdies on the 18th and 7th holes and a bogey on 3. Glissmeyer sported four birdies against three bogeys, going 2-under on the back 9 to card under par for the day.

Freshman Tim Sluiter is tied for 18th at 2-over 146 (75-71) while freshman Matthew Giles is tied for 27th at 3-over 147 (76-71).

Sluiter found himself 2-over after six holes, but birdies on 16 and 18 got him to even after the front 9 and he kept the momentum going to go to 1-under on the back 9. Giles got off to a hot start and was 2-under on the front 9 and was 1-over coming home.

Ten teams and two individuals not on advancing teams will move on from each of the three regionals to the championship finals, set for May 28-31 on the Kampen Course at the Birck Boilermaker Golf Complex in West Lafayette, Ind. Purdue University is the host institution for this year's championships.

The tournament finishes on Saturday (May 17).

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