Stanford, Calif. – Connor Howe fired a 2-under-par 68 Thursday, but he was the only Georgia Tech player under par as the Yellow Jackets posted 10-over-par score of 290 and are tied for 13th place after the opening round of The Goodwin at the Stanford Golf Course.
Only four teams in the 28-team field, made up of mostly Western teams, broke par in the opening round, which was led by the host Cardinal at 2-under-par 278 under cool temperatures and moderate breezes. Tech begins round 2 Friday from the No. 10 tee beginning at 7 a.m. local time, paired with San Diego, TCU and Southern California.
TECH LINEUP – Howe played a steady round of golf with six birdies and four bogeys on the 6,727-yard, par 72 Stanford course and is tied for eighth place individually after the opening round. The junior from Ogden, Utah was one of just 19 golfers among the 146 competitors in the tournament to break par on Thursday.
Tech also counted a 3-over-par 73 from Noah Norton (Chico, Calif.), a 74 from Bartley Forrester (Gainesville, Ga.) and a 75 from Christo Lamprecht (George, South Africa). Luka Karaulic (Dacula, Ga.) shot 80 and did not count Thursday.
The Jackets’ 16 birdies ranked fifth in the field, but they are last in scoring on par-3 holes (+13) and only 2-under on the par-5 holes.
Bartley Forrester shot 74 Thursday and is tied for 78th place. (photo by Clyde Click)
TEAM LEADERBOARD – The host Cardinal, who have won The Goodwin 16 times in the previous 51 editions, leveraged familiarity with their home course to post a 5-under-par 275 Thursday and lead by three shots over 8th-ranked Arizona State (278, -2). Two Stanford players broke par, and the Cardinal counted no score higher than even-par 70.
Denver and San Diego are tied for third at 1-under-par 279, with Washington State fifth at even-par 280.
Washington shot 1-over-par 281 to take sixth place, followed by No. 12 Pepperdine (282, +2). Oregon (283, +3), Nevada (284, +4) and Saint Mary’s (285, +5) round out the top 10 on the leaderboard.
INDIVIDUAL LEADERBOARD – Low scores were possible Thursday, the Gaels’ Blake Hathcoat and the Wolf Pack’s Sam Harned posted the best rounds with 7-under-par 63s. They are one stroke ahead of Jackson Solem of Denver (6-under-par 64), and San Diego’s Jamie Cheatham holds fourth place at 5-under-par 65.
Thorjornsen, SMU’s Noah Goodwin and Pepperdine’s Joe Highsmith are tied for fifth place with 3-under-par 67s, while Howe is on a group of six players tied for eighth at 2-under-par 68.
"Kind of a familiar theme for us today, just too many big scores and too many mistakes. Connor had a nice round and avoided the big holes, but we need to eliminate those as a group. There are some low scores to be had, most of those were in the morning today, and that’s when we play tomorrow."
Head coach Bruce Heppler
TOURNAMENT INFORMATION – This is Georgia Tech’s first appearance at The Goodwin, named for legendary Cardinal head coach and the second time Yellow Jackets have played an event at the Stanford Golf Course (6,732 yards, par 70), having competed in an NCAA regional tournament there in 2017. The format is 54 holes, 18 each day beginning at 7 a.m. Pacific time from both the first and 10th tees, with the low four individual scores of five each day counting toward the team total.
The field, larger than usual at 28 teams, includes only two teams from East of the Mississippi River (Tech and Florida Atlantic) and seven teams from outside the Pacific time zone. Host Stanford has won the tournament 16 times since the inaugural event in 1968. Arizona State (No. 5), Pepperdine (No. 15) and SMU (No. 19) are the highest ranked teams in the field, which also includes California, Colorado, Minnesota, Northwestern, Oregon, Southern California, UCLA, Washington and Washington State.
Past individual winners include major golf champions Tom Watson and Corey Pavin, as well as veteran PGA Tour pros like Duffy Waldorf and Billy Mayfair, and younger pros like Nick Taylor, Patrick Rodgers, Maverick McNealy and Brandon Wu.
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ABOUT GEORGIA TECH GOLF
Georgia Tech’s golf team is in its 26th year under head coach Bruce Heppler, winning 65 tournaments in his tenure. The Yellow Jackets have won 18 Atlantic Coast Conference Championships, made 29 appearances in the NCAA Championship and been the national runner-up four times. Connect with Georgia Tech Golf on social media by liking their Facebook page, or following on Twitter (@GTGolf) and Instagram. For more information on Tech golf, visit Ramblinwreck.com.