COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Georgia Tech golf team placed just two players at par or better in the third round, but held on to claim sole possession of first place after three rounds of play at the NCAA Championship in Columbus, Ohio. None of the 30 teams in the event are currently in red figures following the three circuits of the par-71, 7,222-yard Scarlet Course at Ohio State. Thunderstorms halted play late in the afternoon for the third-straight day, with the leaders having already finished their rounds for the day.
“It was really hard out there today,” said Tech head coach Bruce Heppler. “When you combine the difficult course with the high winds today and the fact that this is the national championship, all three combined gives you an all day lollipop.”
The top-ranked Yellow Jackets finished the third day with a team score of 6-over-par, 290 and are at 1-over-par 277-286-290=853 for the tournament. That total puts Tech one shot ahead of Tulsa (281-289-284=854) and two up on Washington (279-291-285=855) entering the final round of play on Saturday. Those three teams will be grouped together in the final round.
“We’ve played in the last group a lot this year,” said Heppler. “I think that we should be comfortable with playing in that situation having been there before this year.”
Junior Troy Matteson led the Jackets for the second-straight day, carding his second-straight sub-par round with a 1-under-par 70 on Friday. Matteson is at 4-under-par 73-66-70=209 and tied for sixth place. Matteson trails individual leader Graeme McDowell of UAB, who fired a 4-under-par 67 on day three to stand at 8-under-par 71-67-67=205, by four shots.
Senior Kris Mikkelsen was Tech’s second individual at par or better on the day, as he finished with an even-par 71 on Friday and is at 2-over-par 70-74-71=215 after 54 holes. Freshman Nick Thompson is tied with Mikkelsen at 2-over-par 67-73-75=215 after a third-round score of 75. Senior Matt Weibring (70-74-74=218) and rookie Chan Wongluekiet (70-73-76=219) round out the Tech individuals in the field.
The Yellow Jackets will begin their final round at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday grouped with Washington and Tulsa. Live scoring of the event can be found at www.golfstatlive.com, with updates of Georgia Tech’s daily results being posted at www.ramblinwreck.com. The full field had not completed its third round at the time of this release, making player positions unofficial, this release will be updated when play is completed.
TOP-10 TEAM SCORES AFTER 54 HOLES1. Georgia Tech 277-286-290=8532. Tulsa 281-289-284=8543. Washington 279-291-285=8554. Minnesota 284-289-283=856 Texas 291-275-290=8566. North Carolina 282-284-292=858Pepperdine 284-288-286=858 Toledo 283-281-294=8589. NC State 286-281-292=859TCU 283-283-293=859
TOP 10 AND TECH INDIVIDUALS 1. Graeme McDowell, UAB 71-67-67=205 2. Hunter Mahan, Okla. St. 68-71-67=206 3. Brock Mackenzie, Wash. 66-69-72=207 4. Adam Rubinson, TCU 69-67-72=208 Justin Walters, NC State 70-67-71=208 6. Troy Matteson, Ga. Tech 73-66-70=209 Chris Noel, Tulsa 69-69-71=209 8. Michael Beard, Pepperdine 71-72-67=210 Eric Jorgensen, Mich. St. 72-69-69=210 Justin Smith, Minnesota 69-70-71=210 Nick Watney, Fresno State 72-68-70=210