Men's Golf Ties for Second at MW Championships
May 5, 2013
TUCSON, Ariz. - The San Diego State men's golf team came up short in its quest for a third straight conference title on Sunday, tying for second place at the 2013 Mountain West Championships at the OMNI Tucson National Golf Club. The Aztecs carded a 289 during the final round to finish at even-par 852 for the tournament on the par-71, 7,144 Catalina Course.
SDSU had three golfers finish among the top 10 individually, led by Riccardo Michelini (Carpi, Italy), who placed fourth at 3-under 210. The Aztec freshman began the day in a three-way tie for first, but slipped three spots after carding a 71 over the final 18 holes. Despite the stumble, Michelini's performance gave SDSU a top-four finisher at the MW Championships for the eighth straight season.
Tom Berry (New Haw, Surrey, England) ended the tournament two strokes in back of Michelini, tying for sixth at 1-under 212 after posting a final-round 72, which featured four birdies. The Aztec senior was just one shot off the pace in fourth place entering the day; however, five bogeys thwarted his advance up the leaderboard. Still, Berry came away with his third top-10 finish at the MW Championships in four appearances.
Xander Schauffele (San Diego, Calif.), who began the day in fourth along with Berry, was unable to generate any momentum either, dropping into a tie for the 10th spot at 1-over 214 after shooting a 74 on Sunday. Despite draining a team-high six birdies, the SDSU sophomore had his progress derailed by six bogeys and a pair of double bogeys.
Meanwhile, James Holley (Chatsworth, Calif.) finished three strokes behind Schauffele at 3-over 216 following a final-round 72. The Aztec junior managed to offset three bogeys and a double-bogey with four birdies to wind up in a tie for the 13th position.
Rounding out the SDSU contingent was junior Austin Kaiser (Atascadero, Calif.), who tied for 19th at 8-over 221 after posting his second straight 74 on Sunday. New Mexico (-8) ended the Aztecs' two-year reign atop the conference, winning by eight strokes over SDSU and UNLV, which tied for the runner-up spot, while Air Force (+23) and Colorado State (+24) finished a distant fourth and fifth, respectively.
UNLV's Kevin Penner (-7) held off a late charge from James Erkenbeck of New Mexico (-6) to claim medalist honors. Erkenbeck carded a tournament-low 65 during the final round only to fall one stroke short of forcing a playoff, while Lobo teammate Gavin Green (-4), the Aztecs' Michelini (-3) and Taeksoo Kim of Boise State (-2) comprised the rest of the top five.
SDSU, ranked 46th in the latest Golfweek/Sagarin ratings, will now await word of a possible 15th consecutive regional berth when bids are announced Monday, May 6, by the NCAA selection committee.
Mountain West Championships Final Results OMNI Tucson National G.C. Catalina Course Tucson, Ariz. Par 71, 7,144 yards
Team Scores 1. New Mexico 282-281-281--844 (-8) T2. San Diego State 288-275-289--852 (E) T2. UNLV 287-284-281--852 (E) 4. Air Force 299-279-279--875 (+23) 5. Colorado State 296-283-297--876 (+24) 6. Fresno State 301-291-290--882 (+30) T7. Boise State 300-298-299--897 (+45) T7. Wyoming 299-293-305--897 (+45) 9. Nevada 314-301-303--918 (+66)
Individual Leaders (Top 5 + SDSU) 1. Kevin Penner, UNLV 67-72-67--206 (-7) 2. James Erkenbeck, New Mexico 72-70-65--207 (-6) 3. Gavin Green, New Mexico 70-69-70--209 (-4) 4. Riccardo Michelini, SDSU 71-68-71--210 (-3) 5. Taeksoo Kim, Boise State 71-69-71--211 (-2) ---- T6. Tom Berry, SDSU 73-67-72--212 (-1) T10. Xander Schauffele, SDSU 71-69-74--214 (+1) T13. James Holley, SDSU 73-71-72--216 (+3) T19. Austin Kaiser, SDSU 73-74-73--221 (+8)