BATON ROUGE, LA (WIAT) - Alabama's second-ranked men's golf team struggled down the stretch in the first round of the Baton Rouge regional on Thursday. They still managed to finish in a second-place tie shooting 8-over for the day. The Crimson Tide held the lead at 5-under par after 9 holes, but shot a 13-over par total on the back nine.
Florida escaped day one with the lead shooting a 2-under par 286. The top-five teams at the end of three rounds will advance to the NCAA Championships on May 28-June 2nd in Woodstock, Georgia.
We got off to a great start," Alabama head coach Jay Seawell said. "The wind picked up and the course starting playing much more difficult and we just didn't handle it the way we should. We hand to count a few doubles and a quad coming in and that kind of changed our score."
Alabama senior Scott Strohmeyer was one of the bright spots. He fired a 2-under 70 on the day, which was good enough for a first-place tie with two Florida golfers.
"Scott really stepped up with a big round today; he played great," Seawell said. "He posted one of the low scores of the day and was really solid all day. Every time I turned around he was hitting a good shot, even got it to 5-under par. The golf course is really hard and for him to be under par gives the whole team confidence. It was a great senior leadership day."
The UAB Blazers are also in the Baton Rouge regional. They finished the day at 20-over par, which puts them in a tie for 10th place. Wilson McDonald was the high scoring Blazer, posting a 2-over on the day. They will tee off in round two at 8:50 am on Friday.
"Overall it was a good round, I got off to a good start birdying two of my first three holes. I played well all day just made two or three mistakes that cost me three or four shots," said McDonald. "Early on you could be more aggressive but towards the end of the day, the winds picked up and dried out the course and you had to play away from the pins a little bit."
"It's definitely nice to finish one-under over the last few holes. I played well so I just have to eliminate those mistakes and hopefully shoot a good round tomorrow," added McDonald.
"It's a very difficult golf course and we didn't play well and if you don't play your best golf, this course will beat you up. The scores across the board were high today and any team out here can have a day like we did today," said head coach Alan Kaufman. "If we play well tomorrow, we will be right back in the thick of things."
Alabama will tee off at 9:10 a.m. on Friday in the second round of the NCAA Baton Rouge Regional. The Crimson Tide will be paired with Florida and South Alabama in round two. The UAB Blazers will tee off at 8:50 pm. They are paired with Southeastern Louisiana and Mississippi State.
COLUMBUS, OH (WIAT) - The Auburn Tigers men's golf team fired a 9-over 293 in the first round of the NCAA Men's Golf Regional in Columbus, Ohio on Thursday. That's good for fifth-place after day one.
Auburn was led by Dominic Bozzelli, who shot a even-par 71. He is tied for 8th on the individual scoreboard.
"We played the par 5s today 6-over, and we just can't do that," Auburn head coach Nick Clinard said. "It is too strong of a field to give away shots there. However, we are still within striking distance after the first day. We need to let the game come to us and come back strong Friday."
The Tigers are scheduled to tee off on Friday morning at 7:20 am CST.
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