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Wildcats in Sixth At Rain-Delayed NCAA Men's Golf Championships
Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Release: 05/29/2002
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Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
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May 29, 2002

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COLUMBUS, Ohio-Arizona was one of 15 teams to complete opening-round play at the NCAA Men's Golf Championships Wednesday before heavy rains caused the postponement of the completion of first-round play until Thursday. The Wildcats stand in sixth place after carding a 2-under-par 284, however Arizona is second among teams that completed opening-day action.

Colorado shot a 4-under par team score of 280 to lead the tournament following the completion of the morning wave. Illinois was leading the event when play was suspended in the afternoon at 9-under par, while Georgia Tech is second at 8-under. Illinois completed 10 holes and Georgia Tech completed 13 holes. Ben Portie, a senior from Colorado, is the leader in the clubhouse with a 5-under 66. Sophomore Brock Mackenzie of Washington was 5-under through 14 holes when play was suspended.

"The bunkers are under water right now which causes a problem," said Donnie Wagner, NCAA liaison for the men's golf championships. "We're going to start tomorrow morning. We're not sure when, though. The committee will discuss tonight how tomorrow will run."

Individually, three Wildcat golfers played the 7,222-yard, par-71 Ohio State University Scarlet Course at par or better Wednesday to position themselves in the top 20 of golfers who completed the tournament's first 18 holes.

Chris Nallen made only one bogey en route to carding a 2-under-par 69 and sits tied for fourth among participants already completing the first round. Eleven golfers still needing to finish first-round action are ahead of Nallen. Recently named to represent the United States in the 26th annual U.S.A.-Japan Collegiate Golf Championships, Nallen's 69 is his ninth round of the season in the 60s.

Junior Reid Hatley bounced back from an 82nd place finish at the NCAA West Regional by shooting 1-under-par 70 Wednesday in the NCAA Championships' opening round. Hatley used three birdies and 13 pars to position himself in a tie for ninth place among golfers who have already completed the first round.

Ricky Barnes, playing in the No. 1 spot for the Wildcats, shot even par as he landed himself in a tie for 18th place. Barnes turned in a solid performance Wednesday as he made two birdies and 11 pars on the day's final 13 holes.

Freshman Kipp Riehle, making his first NCAA Championships appearance, completed round one with a 1-over-par 72 and is tied for 66th place. Sophomore Andy Connell, who tied for 79th at the 2001 NCAA Championships, sits tied for 95th among all golfers after shooting 2-over-par 73.

Play will resume Thursday at 7 a.m. as teams will finish first-round play. Arizona's originally-scheduled tee-times of 12 p.m. to 12:36 p.m. CDT will be adjusted after the completion of the first round on Thursday.


Arizona Men's Golf
2002 NCAA Championships - Day One Results

Place Team Scores Thru 1. Illinois 171 (-9) 10 2. Georgia Tech 245 (-8) 14 3. Washington 227 (-5) 14 T4. Colorado 280 (-4) F T4. North Carolina 181 (-4) 11 6. ARIZONA 282 (-2) F

Place Name, School Score T1. Ben Portie, Colorado 66 (-5) T2. Nicholas Thompson, Georgia Tech 67 (-4) T2. Mark Warman, San Diego State 67 (-4) T4. Brad Heaven, Toledo 69 (-2) T4. CHRIS NALLEN, Arizona 69 (-2) T4. Adam Rubinson, TCU 69 (-2) T4. Ari Savolainen, Florida 69 (-2) T4. Ryan Thomas, UAB 69 (-2)

Place Arizona Golfer Score T4. Chris Nallen 69 (-2) T9. Reid Hatley 70 (-1) T18. Ricky Barnes 71 (E) T28. Kipp Riehle 72 (+1) T42. Andy Connell 73 (+2)

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