@GT_Golf Tied for 6th at NCAA Championship
Albertson leads 12th-ranked Yellow Jackets with 69
Bradenton, Fla. - Anders Albertson fired a 3-under-par 69 Friday, and Georgia Tech finished with a 5-over-par round of 293 to tie for sixth place after the opening round of the NCAA Golf Championship at The Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Fla.
TECH LINEUP - The Yellow Jackets led the field by recording 21 birdies Friday, and played the four par-5 holes nine strokes under par. Tech stumbled out of the gate, but recovered to get to +1 twice on the back nine, but a couple of missteps and two bogeys on 18 kept the Jackets from finishing higher.
Albertson, a senior from Woodstock, Ga., who has won twice this year, birdied six holes in his round but finished with a bogey at 18 and is one shot out of the lead. Freshman Chris Petefish played the back nine 3-under-par to finish with a 72, and the Jackets also counted a pair of 76s from Ollie Schniederjans and James Clark.
The first time Tech got to +1 on the back nine Friday, Clark triple-bogeyed the par-4 15th. The Jackets again got back to that number, but Schniederjans finished the last three holes with a double-bogey and two bogeys.
TEAM LEADERBOARD - Fourth-ranked Illinois, playing in the afternoon wave, shot 4-under-par 284 behind a 68 from Thomas Detry and took a two-stroke lead over Georgia after the opening round. The Bulldogs, who shot even-par 288, Southern California (289, +1) and San Diego State (290, +2) all played in the morning wave, and their scores stood up well enough to finish the first day second, third and fourth.
Ninth-ranked LSU, despite counting a 79, was in fifth at 292 (+4), followed by Tech and Florida at 293 (+5). The Yellow Jackets are seven shots off the lead, and five shots ahead of 15th place. The field will be cut to the top 15 teams after 54 holes for Monday's final round of stroke play.
Tech's playing partners on Friday and again Saturday, seventh-ranked Stanford and 11th-ranked Oklahoma, shot 310 (+22) and 312 (+24) and hold the bottom two spots on the leaderboard. The Sooners won the San Diego Regional, in which Tech played, by 20 strokes.
INDIVIDUAL LEADERBOARD - Detry and South Florida's Claudio Correa shot the day's best rounds, 4-under-par 68, and lead by one over Albertson and Duke's Jake Shuman, both at 69. Eight golfers, including Georgia's Zach Healy, are tied for fifth place at 2-under-par 70.
Petefish's 72 put him in a group of 11 players tied for 24th place. Of note, Stanford's Maverick McNealy, the No. 1-ranked played in the nation, shot 78 Friday, while Arizona State's Jon Rahm, ranked No. 2, is tied for 13th after a 71.
TOURNAMENT INFORMATION - The 2015 NCAA Championship is being played at The Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Fla., which measures 7,483 yards and plays to a par of 72. This is the seventh year the NCAA has used the stroke play-to-match play format, in which the top eight teams after stroke play are seeded for team match play to decide the team champion.
This year, the finals schedule will consist of three days (54 holes) of stroke play on Friday through Sunday (May 29-31), after which the top 15 teams and nine individuals not on an advancing team will be determined. That is followed by a final day of 18 holes of stroke play (Monday, June 1) to determine the eight teams that will advance to match play, as well as the 72-hole individual champion. The team national champion will be determined in a team match-play format that consists of quarterfinal and semifinal matches on Tuesday (June 2), followed by the championship match on Wednesday (June 3).
TOURNAMENT FIELD - The Yellow Jackets are in the championship for the 27th time since 1985, which is tied for fourth most in that time period behind Oklahoma State (30), Florida (29) and Arizona State (28). All three of those teams are in this year's field. Of the 30 teams in the field, all are ranked among Golfstat's top 50 teams, with the lowest ranked team being No. 47 Charlotte, champion of the Chapel Hill Regional. Top-ranked Florida State is the top seed, followed by No. 2 Texas and No. 3 Arizona State. Illinois, Vanderbilt and South Carolina are the next three seeds. All of the Golfstat top 17 teams are in the field.
TECH'S NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY - Georgia Tech has reached the NCAA Championship finals for the 27th time since 1985 (28th time in program history), and has posted nine top-8 finishes in the last 13 tries.
The Yellow Jackets tied for 10th in 2009, the first-year of the stroke-play/match-play format, but qualified for match play each of the last four times they have advanced to the NCAA Championship (third in 2010, second in 2011, second in 2013, fifth in 2014). Tech did not advance out of its regional in 2012. Tech has lost to the eventual champion three times - Augusta State by the score of 3-2 in the quarterfinals in 2010 and 2011 and to Alabama (3-0-2) in 2013.
Tech finished as the runner-up in the NCAA Championship four times (1993, 2000, 2002 and 2005) in the previous 72-hole stroke-play format, more than any team in the history of the championship except Houston, Michigan, Texas and Wake Forest, who also have four, and Oklahoma State, which has five.
COACH Bruce Heppler SAYS - "It was a pretty good score for the afternoon round. We gave up a few at the end, but overall I'm pretty pleased. This was the tough round, waiting until 1:30 to play, so we'll get out of here and look forward to playing early tomorrow. We hit some good shots and made some putts. Obviously we're hitting enough good shots off the tees and getting into position to make birdies."
REMAINING CHAMPIONSHIP SCHEDULE
May 30 - Second round paired with Oklahoma and Stanford, 8:10 a.m.
May 31 - Third round, pairings determined by 36-hole score, tee times begin at 7 a.m.
June 1 - Fourth round with top 15 teams and nine individuals, tee times begin at 11:30 a.m. (Golf Channel, 3-8 p.m. ET)
June 2 - Match play quarterfinals and semifinals, 7 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. (Golf Channel, 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 3-8 p.m. ET)
June 3 - Championship match, 2:10 p.m. (Golf Channel, 1-8 p.m. ET)
-- Georgia Tech Golf (@GT_GOLF) May 29, 2015
-- Georgia Tech Golf (@GT_GOLF) May 29, 2015
— Georgia Tech Golf (@GT_GOLF) May 29, 2015