Greg Byrne's Wildcat Wednesday
2006 NCAA West Regional - First Round Release, Results & Quotes
By: Arizona Athletics
Release: May 19, 2006
Photo Courtesy: Arizona Athletics
Related Links

TUCSON, Ariz. ?- The Florida Gators held true to its top seed through the first round, as the Gators tallied a 15-under-par 273 total to hold the first-round lead Thursday at the NCAA Division I Men’s Golf West Regional at Omni Tucson National Golf Course.


Florida, the consensus No. 3 team in the nation heading into the tournament, was the No.1 seed at the West Regional.


“We’ve been playing well most of the spring,” Florida head coach Buddy Alexander said.  “We felt like we could come out and compete.  It’s a pleasant surprise to play this well today, but not a shock.”


Utah sophomore Dustin Pimm, competing as an individual, carded a six-under 66 and sits atop the individual leader board heading into round two.


The 141-man field battled swirling winds and temperatures that hovered near 100 degrees.


“I played really well, I putted really well today,” said Pimm.  “It was not as hot as I thought it would be though. Tomorrow I don’t think I can do much better than I did today, I owe it all to my putting.”


Three Florida players and one from Pepperdine all shot a 67 (-5) and stand in a tie for second place.  Leading Florida was senior Matt Every, freshman Billy Horschel and sophomore James Vargas.  Pepperdine sophomore Colin Wilcox led his team to a tie for seventh place.


“I played solid,” said Florida’s Vargas.  “I hit well and putted really well.” 


Host Arizona shot a combined six-under-par on the 10th hole, leaping the Cats from the bottom third of the pack into a tie for second place.   Arizona continued its solid play on the back nine and stand second in the 27-team field with a nine-under 279.


“We played No. 10 pretty good,” said Arizona head coach Rick LaRose.  “To be in second with our No. 1 guy shooting two-over is a really good start.”


The 19-seed Fresno State Bulldogs posted an eight-under-par 280 and sit in third place.


“It was a good first day; it’s a very nerve-racking time,” Fresno State head coach Mike Watney said.  “We are not going to qualify, obviously, after the first round, but a bad round certainly may get us knocked out for later.”


Brigham Young, North Carolina State and Nevada all shot a six-under-par 282 and are tied for fourth place.


UC-Irvine shot a five-under-par 283 in the first round, and are tied for seventh place along with Stanford and Pepperdine.


“I think I played solid today, the heat was difficult,” said UC-Irvine junior Kenny Kim.  “The score is out there to take.”


The 54-hole event continues tomorrow at Omni Tucson National, a par 72, 7,200-yard layout.  Second round tee times begin at 7 a.m. PDT.


Team Standings

1.      Florida                             273 (-15)

2.      Arizona                            279 (-9)

3.      Fresno State                    280 (-8)

4.      Brigham Young                 282 (-6)

         North Carolina State          282 (-6)

         Nevada                             282 (-6)

7.      Pepperdine                       283 (-5)

         Stanford                           283 (-5)

         UC-Irvine                          283 (-5)

10.     Arizona State                   284 (-4)

         East Tennessee State       284 (-4)

         Loyola Maymount             284 (-4)

13.     New Mexico State             287 (-1)

14.     Washington                      288 (E)

15.     Baylor                              289 (+1)

         Santa Clara                      289 (+1)

         Alabama                          289 (+1)

18.     New Mexico                     290 (+2)

         Cal Poly                           290 (+2)

         San Diego State               290 (+2)

         Louisville                          290 (+2)

22.     Denver                             293 (+5)

23.     Western Kentucky            294 (+6)

24.     Houston                           295 (+7)

25.     Bucknell                           297 (+9)

26.     San Diego                        299 (+11)

27.     Jackson State                  314 (+26)


Top 10 Players

1.      Dustin Pimm, Utah                              66 (-6)

2.      Matt Every, Florida                              67 (-5)

Billy Horschel, Florida                         67 (-5)

         James Vargas, Florida                         67 (-5)

         Colin Wilcox, Pepperdine                     67 (-5)

6.      Ryan Baca, Baylor                              68 (-4)

         Alejandro Canizares, Arizona State      68 (-4)

         Jake Ellison, Brigham Young               68 (-4)

         Adam Hagen, Nevada                          68 (-4)

         Dodge Kemmer, Stanford                     68 (-4)

         Dave Lewinski, Cal Poly                      68 (-4)

         Jon Rosa, Fresno State                       68 (-4)

         Nathan Spoon, North Carolina State     68 (-4)



2006 NCAA Division I Men’s Golf West Regional

May 18-20, 2006

Omni Tucson National Golf Course

Tucson, Ariz.

Hosted by the University of Arizona



First Round Quotes

Thursday, May 18, 2006


Rich Merritt, Head Coach, University of Nevada

“We probably shot three-five under today I think a competitive score will be 12-15 (under par).  The course was absolutely perfect.  It’s starting to get hot.  I think with our afternoon tee-time tomorrow the heat will play a factor.”


Adam Hagen, senior, University of Nevada

“I played pretty solid, nothing too tough.  I was trying not to be too aggressive with my putts.  The heat will be a factor tomorrow but there is nothing we can do about it.”


Paul Smolinski, Head Coach, UC-Irvine

“We are doing pretty good for the first day. Everyone is doing really well, it’s hard to tell where you stand after the first day, but I think we are doing pretty well. I’m happy with the first day of competition.”


Kenny Kim, junior, UC-Irvine

“I think I played solid today, the heat was difficult, but I just drank a lot of water. The course is playing true and I just need to keep putting it in play. The score is out there to take.”


Mike Watney, Head Coach, Fresno State University

“It was a good first day; it’s a very nerve-racking time. We are not going to qualify obviously after the first round, but a bad round certainly may get us knocked out for later. We are playing with a lot of confidence and are strong. I’m really proud of the guys.”


Johnny Rosa, senior, Fresno State University

“I got a new sand wedge and I like it a lot, it has helped me to get up and down a lot easier.  I have been able to be confident so far.  The weather has been perfect, but I think tomorrow afternoon it may be a factor for some people, but I like hot weather.”


Eric Hoos, Head Coach, University of Denver

“I hurt my ankle and missed most of the day, but this was a poor start. Our team score was like my ankle, sprained. Thankfully, there are a couple more days left.”


Charlie Soule, senior, University of Denver

“It went all right, kind of ho-hum. Nothing spectacular. I bogeyed the last hole, so it kind of ended on a sour note.”


Scott Lieberwirth, Head Coach, New Mexico State University

“We played pretty well. We really struggled on the last hole. (Number.) Eighteen is really good, but not that hard. The course is giving up a lot of low scores. It was a balanced effort, but we need a spark from one of our guys.”


Robert Goff, senior, New Mexico State University

“It was a beautiful morning. I think there are going to be a lot of low scores. Team wise, we hope to get some good rounds in and have a chance to go to nationals.”


Robert Miller, Head Coach, Santa Clara University

“I’m disappointed with our finish. We had two at seven-under through 17 holes. Thirteen-16 were rough and we gave up a lot of strokes. Everyone played decently. We finished in order.  We need more production from the bottom of the order.”


Eric Lillibridge, junior, Santa Clara University

“I played well, today. I was solid on the front. I had a great par on ten after I hit the it in the water and I made a lot of pars and five-footers. I had some birdies on the back and held it together.”


Jim Cotner, Head Coach, Bucknell University

“I think we played pretty well today, for our first day at the regionals.  I am pretty pleased.  For us to get a score of around 290 is pretty good.  This is the first tournament all year where we have been able to wear short sleeves and shorts.  Usually, we are in our rain suits.  With all the excitement, I think we stepped up to the challenge.”


Ben Pellicani, senior, Bucknell University

“I played pretty well, you can’t be too unhappy with a 71 on a course like this, especially at regionals.  Tomorrow afternoon will be a little hotter, but it was nice teeing off when the temperature was still in the 80s.”


Eddie Payton, Head Coach, Jackson State University

“It’s hard to tell how we did today.  We have a real young group.  We had great weather.  It feels like home out there.”


Raul Cortes, junior, Jackson State University

“I didn’t do as well as I expected for the first day. I putted poorly. Tomorrow I’m just going to have to come out and put up good numbers and hopefully improve.”


Alex Galvan, Head Coach, Loyola Marymount University

“I couldn’t be more pleased with today. This is an incredible group of guys and they all work very hard. They did great today.”


Josh Escobedo, sophomore, Loyola Marymount University

“I think I played solid today. The course is in good shape and the greens are in good shape. I am kind of used to the heat, but I think I’m doing better than a lot of the guys out here. Tomorrow I think I can make a few more putts, but I think I am sitting pretty good.”


Scott Cartwright, Head Coach, Cal Poly

“We struggled coming in. We played overly aggressive in the wrong spots and it cost us a few. We let a few slip away.”


Dave Lewinski, sophomore, Cal Poly

“I played well. This is my first tournament round without a three putt. I could have been a lot better.”


Brian Tirpak, Head Coach, Western Kentucky University

“We left a lot of shots on the green. It’s pretty simple ?- we squandered a lot of opportunities. It was hard to get any momentum.”


Brent Long, junior, Western Kentucky University

“I tried to make a lot of pars and shot about even. The greens were rolling great. We didn’t get to play 16, 17 and 18 yesterday (in the practice round) and it cost me a few strokes today.”


Tim Mickelson, Head Coach, University of San Diego

“We didn’t play how we wanted to, but everybody fought hard. We have five solid players and two played well today.”


Luke Antonelli, senior, University of San Diego

“I got off to a good start but had a rough time on the back nine. The conditions are perfect so there is no excuse not to play well.”


Buddy Alexander, Head Coach, University of Florida

“We played well.  We’ve been playing well most of the spring. We felt like we could come out and compete. We wanted to get off to a good start. It’s a pleasant surprise to play this well today, but not a shock.”


James Vargas, senior, University of Florida

“I played solid. I hit well and putted really well. I got off to a poor start, doubled on the first hole but I played well overall.”


Bruce Brockbank, Head Coach, Brigham Young University

“I watched Oscar (Alavarez) most of the day. We were up and down. We made some birdies and gave some back. Six-under is not going to kill us, but we could do better. We have to keep plugging away. Anytime you shoot six-under it’s not too shabby. We need to find a way to better our score.”


Nick Killpack, freshman, Brigham Young University

“I hit the ball good and putted solid. I didn’t make a lot of mistakes. If I hit a bad shot then I recovered on the next one.”


Randy Lein, Head Coach, Arizona State University

“We started out slow and didn’t get a lot better. The weather and course were perfect for some good scores. We finished four-under and picked up a few shots at the end.”


Alejandro Canizares, senior, Arizona State University

“I didn’t play very well. I struggled with my iron and putting. I made a good par on nine after I hit in the water and then made par from there and that got me pumped back up.”


Jay Seawell, Head Coach, University of Alabama

“We played pretty poorly today.  We ended up one over (par).  It was not a good first round. We had a couple of bad holes, but hopefully tomorrow we will be a little more aggressive and make some more birdies.”


Matthew Swan, freshman, University of Alabama

“I think I played ok today.  It was a good start for me. I could have gotten a few more birdies but I came up short every time.”


Greg Preist, Head Coach, Baylor University

“We didn’t play great the first day.  The heat was not that much of a factor.  We need to come out and play well the next two days. But we still have a shot.”


Ryan Baca, senior, Baylor University

“I played really solid except for a few birdie opportunities that I missed. I play summer golf in Texas so I am used to the heat. I’m not sure how everyone else played, but I am pleased with my scores and looking forward to tomorrow.”


Fred Warren, Head Coach, East Tennessee State University

“We started off well but ran into a few problems on the back nine. The heat was a little bit of a factor, but we have been taking the necessary precautions to stay hydrated.”


Gareth Shaw, sophomore, East Tennessee State University

“I left a few shots and I wasn’t hitting the ball as well as I’d like, but I was doing a good job of keeping it play. The weather is obviously a factor, but you just control your emotions because you can’t control the weather.”


Bear Down Challenge M Golf