UW At Top Of Team, Individual Leaderboards At Familiar Husky Invitational
BREMERTON, Wash. – Washington posted the lowest team score in both the first and second rounds of the Husky Invitational and RJ Manke and Teddy Lin are one-two on the individual leaderboard after 36 holes of play at the Olympic Course at Gold Mountain.
The Huskies are -23 (277-276-553) as a team after a marathon day on Monday in which they only led by one shot after the morning round. They turned it on during the second 18 and head into Tuesday's final round 12 shots clear of the field. Oregon and Boise State (-9) are tied for second, while Missouri and Oregon State (-7) sit tied for fourth.
Manke shot a 67 in the morning round and followed up with a bogey-free-68 in the second round to finish at -9. He is one shot ahead of Lin (67-69-136) and two other golfers.
For Manke, who is from University Place, Wash., and transferred back to the Pacific Northwest after spending four years at Pepperdine, Monday was definitely a homecoming. Not only was he playing in front of family and friends, Manke is at a course where he is very comfortable.
He grew up near course designer John Harbottle III and won the Washington Amateur by seven shots at the very same Olympic Course this past July. Manke has a simple explanation as to why he has so much success on the course.
"Every course he made," Manke said of the late golf course architect, "he made around his game. He was a fader of the ball and so am I. A lot of the holes have room on the right side, and I think he did that on purpose. So, me having a fade, definitely helps a lot."
Still, Manke had to execute shots, which he did more often than not.
"I was hitting a lot of greens today and putting myself in position to make birdies and had some good par saves."
Husky coach Alan Murray also gives Volunteer Assistant Scott Alexander a lot of credit for the Huskies' success on Monday and over the years at the course. Alexander was Director of Golf at Gold Mountain for almost three decades and his course knowledge always proves to be an ace in the hole.
"He knows the course inside-out," Murray said of his team's not-so-secret weapon. "Having him here was a huge advantage. He's played the course a million times.
"He was kind of the 15th club in the bag for our guys."
Manke and Lin are joined in the top-10 by senior Noah Woolsey. He is tied for eighth at -5 (70-69-139).
Petr Hruby is tied for 26th after a 73-70 (-1) and Taehoon Song is tied for 46th (75-73=148).
At the same time the team tournament is taking place, the Husky Invitational is taking place on the Cascade Course. Freshman Aidan O'Hagan is second out of 44 individual competitors after firing a 7-under 137 (67-70).
Drew Warford is tied for 19th (E, 74-70) in his collegiate debut. Also making their Husky debuts are Patrick Wu (T22nd, +1), Robert Galligan (T27th, +2) and Justin Hopkins (43rd, +17).
Oregon's Greyson Leach leads the field at -8.
The final rounds of both tournaments start tomorrow at 8:00 a.m. in a shotgun format.