Tigers Late Surge Keeps Them In Contention At The NCAA Regionals
|Getting off to a rough start to their second day of play at the 2013 NCAA Regionals, the Pacific golf team used a late back-nine surge to stay in contention for one of the coveted top-five spots and a trip to the NCAA Championships in Pullman, Wash. The Tigers started the day in fifth place and stayed right where they began on Friday, May 17, after shooting a +1, 289 on the round. Pacific is tied with San Diego State for the fifth and final spot into the NCAA Championships at the end of the month.
Individually, the Tigers again took apart the back-nine at the Palhouse Ridge Golf Course to save a round that began with the Pacific falling down the leaderboard on the front-nine. Sophomore Eric Sugimoto came on strong once again as the second-year golfer buried five birdies over the final nine holes of play to erase a trio of bogies on the front-nine of the course. Sugimoto's -2, 70 pushed his two day total to -9, which put him in a tie for fourth at the end of 36-holes. Just as he was after day one, Sugimoto, as well as the rest of the field, still stares up at USC's Sam Smith who followed his first day -10, 62 with a -8, 64 to post a -18 at the top of the leaderboard, six strokes up on his closest competitor.
Just behind the Tigers' overall leader, freshman SeungJae Maeng followed up his first day -1, 71 with a -3, 69, to post Pacific's best round of the morning. Maeng played even through the first nine holes of the day with a pair of birdies and a pair of bogies before catching fire on the back nine with four birdies. The -3, 69 marked just the third time in Maeng's young career the freshman has broken 70 at the collegiate level.
The Tigers will hit the course for the final day of play at the Pullman Regional on Saturday, May 18 as they tee-off at 8:20 in the morning looking to protect their lead in the top-5 of the leaderboard.