(gomocs.com) SCOTTSDALE, Ariz—The Chattanooga Mocs got the NCAA Championships started Friday with 294. The Mocs were one behind playing partner New Mexico and two clear of No. 22 Colorado State. It was a tough morning for scoring with only No. 11 Georgia Tech at par coming in on the number at 280.
Paul Conroy led the way with a level-par 70. Samuel Espinosa was next with 72 as Garrett Engle carded 75. John Houk and Braedon Wear shared the final counting tally of 77.
“It played hard out there today” Coach Blaine Woodruff shared. “It was a little windier than we expected. This place is a great test. Paul played really well, and Sam had a great round. I think it comes down to us being a little undisciplined and forcing a few errors.
“Pars are good out here. And that can be tough. That’s the discipline when you lose a couple of shots, not trying to get it back but letting it come to you. That’s what I didn’t think we didn’t do a good job with today.
“We still have two days left to get back in this thing. We need to come out tomorrow ready to make a move.”
The squad got off to a good start opening on the 10th hole. They were 1 under through eight (No. 17), but the turn was treacherous. The Mocs played holes 18-3 at 7 over. Birdies came at four and five, but the final four holes saw eight shots dropped as the weather started cooking.
Chattanooga returns to the tee Saturday at 4:20 p.m., Eastern time. The group is paired again with New Mexico and Colorado as the last groups of the afternoon wave off No. 1.
Scoring and pairings, when available, are linked above along with a comprehensive results package when the rounds end.
NCAA Championships – Finals
May 26-31 (Fri-Wed) | Scottsdale, Ariz. | 72 holes (18 per day)
Keep an eye on…
– Conroy’s 70 ties the third-best individual round at an NCAA Finals behind Chris Robb’s magical 2014 run that included cards of 64 (-6) and 69 (-1) to finish 15th. It matched final rounds in 2012 at Riviera by Stephan Jaeger and Steven Fox.
– The team’s 294 is the third-best team total in a finals appearance behind 290 in the final round in 2012 and 292 to start the 2009 event.
– Eight birdies on the counting cards ties for the fewest over 18 holes this season with the second round at Auburn Regionals. Just the third time with less than 10 all year.
4:20 pm (ET) – Braedon Wear: 77
4:31 pm – Samuel Espinosa: 72
4:42 pm – Garrett Engle: 75
4:53 pm – Paul Conroy: 70
5:04 pm – John Houk: 77
Alternate: Alec Cobb: 73.00
Grayhawk Golf Cub | Par 70 | 7,289 yards
(30 teams + 6 Individuals): (28 Seed) Chattanooga, (1) Vanderbilt), (2) North Carolina, (3) Illinois, (4) Arizona State, (5) Texas Tech, (6) Stanford, (7) Florida State, (8) Pepperdine, (9) Florida, (10) Oklahoma, (11) Georgia Tech, (12) Auburn, (13), Texas A&M, (14) Alabama, (15) Virginia, (16) Texas, (17) Mississippi State, (18) Oregon, (19) Colorado State, (20) Colorado State, (21) Georgia, (22) Arkansas, (23) Baylor, (24) Duke, (25) ETSU, (26) BYU, (27) San Francisco, (29) New Mexico & (30) Colorado. Indys: (1) Drew Salyers, Indiana; (2) Jonas Baumgartner (Oklahoma State); (3) Riley Lewis, Loyola Marymount; (4) Luke O’Neill, Kansas State; (5) Sam Lape, Furman; (6) Will King, Kansas
5th appearance: 1993 (Neil Connolly), 2009, 2012, 2014 (Chris Robb), 2023
Cuts Made: 2014 (Chris Robb)
Top 15s (1)
2014: 15, Chris Robb – 69-75-64=208 (-2)