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UTEP Women’s Golf Team Set to Tackle Tulsa Tourney

After opening the 2017-18 campaign by garnering a third-place finish at the MSU/Payne Stewart Memorial, the UTEP women’s golf team will look to continue its early-season success at the ORU Shootout next week.

The Miners will join 16 other teams at the long-running tournament in Tulsa, Okla. on Monday and Tuesday.  UTEP has participated in the event every year but once since 2005.  The Miners were runner-up at the tournament in 2008 and 2009 and picked up third-place showings in 2005, 2010 and 2011.

The ORU Shootout will be contested at the par-71, 6,013-yard Meadowbrook Country Club.  Joining UTEP in the field will be Arkansas State, Houston Baptist, Incarnate Word, Lamar, Louisiana Monroe, McClellan Community College, McNeese, Missouri State, Northern Iowa, Oral Roberts, Oklahoma Christian, Stephen F. Austin, Texas A&M Corpus Christi, UT Arlington, Utah Valley and Wichita State.

The Miners have been idle since competing at the MSU/Payne Stewart Memorial in Springfield, Mo. Sept. 11-12.

“We’ve had a good couple of weeks of practices,” UTEP coach Jere Pelletier said.  “We are taking the same team to Tulsa that went to Missouri State.  I’m hoping everybody has kind of calmed down from the start of the year and plays the tournament like they’ve been playing in practice.”

Two freshmen (Audrey Haddad and Valeria Mendizabal) and a sophomore (Abbie Anghelescu) will join vets Lily Downs and June Ting in Pelletier’s lineup.  Ting tied for eighth place and Downs tied for 11th place in Missouri.  For Ting, it marked her seventh career top-10 finish and fifth in the last year.

“I think the Tulsa field will be tougher [than Missouri] and the course is harder,” Pelletier said.  “This will really test us to see how we stand with the other teams in the country.”

UTEP Women’s Golf Takes Third in Season Opener

The UTEP women’s golf team launched its 2017-18 season on a high note, finishing in third place at the MSU/Payne Stewart Memorial on Tuesday in Springfield, Mo.

After struggling to an opening-round score of 310, the Miners shot 290 and 296 over the final 36 holes to wind up in third place (896 total), behind champion Memphis (293-287-294-874) and runner-up Murray State (297-298-293-888).

“Other than the first round, I thought we played well,” UTEP coach Jere Pelletier said.  “We have two new girls [Valeria Mendizabal and Audrey Haddad] where this was their first collegiate tournament, and I thought they handled it pretty well.  Our junior and senior played well, especially the last two days.  If we would’ve played a little better in the first round, we would’ve had a chance to win it or at least finish second.  We just got too far behind after the first round.”

Senior June Ting tied for eighth place, firing a 10-over-par 223 (78-72-73).  Junior Lily Downs tied for 11th place, shooting 224 (77-73-74).  The individual winner was Michaela Fletcher of Memphis (72-69-71-212).

UTEP’s Abbie Anghelescu (75-76-75-226) and Mendizabal (80-72-74-226) tied for 22nd place, and Audrey Haddad tied for 75th place (89-73-85-247).

The Miners will take a short break from competition before returning to the links for the Bob Hurley ORU Shootout Sept. 25-26 in Tulsa.

Miner Men’s Golf Finishes Sixth at Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational

COLORADO SPRINGS, Co.- The UTEP men’s golf team finished its first tournament of the 2017-18 season, the Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational, in sixth place on Sunday.

The team shot a tournament-low round of 284 for a 854 (-10/285-285-284) total at the Eisenhower Golf Course (par 72/ 7,511 yards) in Colorado Springs, Colo. Wyoming took the title after a 835 (-29/284-270-281) showing.

All Miners placed in the top-50 of the field and the team led the tournament in pars with 179 and had a strong showing playing the par 5s, ranking second in par 5 scoring with a 4.63 average (-22 Sc.).

“We did a good job [on the par 5s], really well,” head coach Scott Lieberwirth said. “The par 3s were a little messy, but the only thing we didn’t do is get momentum, we were bouncing around, we let things slip away on the short holes. Top to bottom as a team though it was a good performance. Shooting three rounds under par is something good we can take away from this tournament.”

Senior Prescott Mann, playing in his third Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational, and junior Settavut Paradee, making his Gene Miranda debut, paced the Miners in their share of 13th place after firing a tournament total of 212 (-4).

Mann shot a third round total of 69, recording four birdies, two of which came consecutively on holes 11 (par 5) and 12 (par 4). Mann started out stready, tallying four pars before he shot his first of two birdies on the front nine. He played the back nine strong as well, matching his birdie total and only bogeying once.

Paradee’s final round of 71 began with five pars in a row before he shot his first of four birdies. The Bangkok, Thailand native would bogey twice before hitting another birdie to finish the front nine. He then collected another par before his third birdie came on hole No. 11, and remained at 1-under until his last bogey on No. 14. Another par and a birdie later, Paradee finished the back nine with two consecutive pars to finish the day at 1-under and the tournament at 4-under par. The junior led the team in birdies with 12.

“He [Paradee] didn’t let the bad shots get to him,’ Lieberwirth said. “He played really nicely, on this course these greens are very difficult. I’m really proud of him.”

Sharing a spot in 21st was Charles Corner, who had a steady start with six pars in a row before he shot for birdie on hole No. 7. The senior would remain at 1-under before he bogeyed on hole No. 15, but quickly bounced back with a birdie immediately after to finish the round at 1-under to help his tournament total of 2-under 214 (71-72-71) in his Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational debut. Corner lead the Miners and was third in the field in total pars with 39.

Nicklas Pihl finished in a tie for 40th, finishing the day at 1-over 73 for a weekend total of 2-over 218 (73-72-73). The senior collected four birdies, three coming from par 5s, which helped him lead the UTEP team on par 5 scoring (4.42/-7). In total, Pihl recorded 11 birdies and 31 pars though the weekend.

Coming in a tie for 50th was Aaron Terrazas, who started out strong with birdies on holes No. 2 and No. 4 to remain at 2-under before he had a bogey on No. 7. The junior would continue steady play, not slipping above 2-over par to finish the day and complete the weekend with 4-over 220 (71-75-74). Terrazas was second on the UTEP squad with 38 pars during the Invite.

Miner individual Ricardo Catalan completed his collegiate debut with a final round of 75 for a tournament total of 4-over 220 (73-72-75), placing him in tie for 50th. After he shot his tournament-low round of 72 on Saturday, Catalan started off the final round strong, notching a birdie to remain at 1-under before consecutive bogeys left him over par.

Another birdie would even him out, and Catalan stayed steady at even-par before another bogey on hole No. 5 put him above par. Catalan would remain above par to close out his first collegiate career, tallying 36 pars and seven birdies along the way.

The Miners will be back in action Sept. 22 and 23 when they lace up for the William H. Tucker Intercollegiate in Albuquerque, N.M.

“We still have a really great team this year,” Lieberwirth said. “We will work on our iron play, the course at UNM is so dependent on iron accuracy. We will be working on that for the next ten days before we leave.”

Live stats for the William H. Tucker Invitational will be available via golfstat.com.

UTEP Men’s Golf Set to Defend Title at Gene Miranda Invitational

The 2017 Conference USA Champion UTEP men’s golf team will defend its first of three tournament title at the 49th Gene Miranda Falcon Invitational this weekend, Sept. 8-10, in Colorado Springs, Co.

Tee time at the Eisenhower Golf Club Blue Course (par 72, 7,461 yards) is set for a shotgun start at 7:30 a.m. (MT) on both Friday and Saturday and Sunday’s start is set for 7:30 a.m., with pairings and tee times determined by team scores.

“We found success last year, but this is a different team,” seventh-year head coach Scott Lieberwirth said. “It’s the first tournament of the year, so you always want to get off on the right foot and get some positive momentum.”

Last year, the Miners were crowned co-champions of the Gene Miranda Invitational, sharing the title with UNLV, after both shot one under 863.

The Miners will be joined on the field by host Air Force, Abilene Christian, Colorado, Colorado State, Drake, George Washington, NM State, Northern Colorado, Northern Iowa, SIU-Edwardsville, Southern Utah, Texas State, UNLV, Utah State, Utah Valley State, Weber State and Wyoming.

“There’s defiantly some pride involved [after winning the title last year], but it’s a different format than the 36-18 format last year,” Lieberwith said. “The course is difficult to read, but the key to playing well is hitting your iron shots.”

Taking the course for the Miners will be Charles Corner, Nicklas Pihl, Aaron Terrazas, Prescott Mann, Sethavuth Paradee, and Ricardo Catalan, who will be playing as an individual.

Pihl and Mann will be returning to the Invite after placing tied for 19th and tied for 30th last year. Pihl shot 222 (72-75-75) and Mann carded 225 (73-76-76) to help the Miners to the title. Pihl was a staple in the UTEP line up last season, competing in 12 tournaments and finishing at the top of the Miner scorecard twice. The senior recorded a 74.0 stroke average and had his season-high finish at the National Invitational Tournament, where he placed in a tie for 11th with 211 (71-68-72).

Mann also put in work for the Miners last season, playing in eight tournaments and averaging 73.7 per stroke. The senior had a collegiate career-high finish when he took a share of third at the Price’s Give ‘Em Five Invitational after shooting 206 (67-69-70).

Corner and Terrazas will be making their Gene Miranda debut, but both are skilled golfers who, along with Pihl, are returning from the 2017 C-USA championship team and the NCAA regional squad. In 12 tournaments played for the Miners in 2016, Corner recorded a 72.6 stroke average with a low round of 65 and was UTEP’s top finisher in three tournaments, including the stroke play portion of the conference championship and the NCAA Washington Regional.

Terrazas joined the Miners in January after transferring from Oklahoma and made an immediate impact on the team, playing in seven tournaments with a 72.3 stroke average and having a season-high finish in 6th place at the Lone Star Invitational.

Paradee will be competing in his fourth collegiate tournament. The Bangkok, Thailand native last joined the team at the Price’s Give ‘Em Five Invitational where he finished in a tie for 73rd against stiff competition. The junior’s collegiate low round is 73.

Catalan will be making his collegiate debut after redshirting last year, but is anticipated to have a successful tournament.

“It’s Ricardo’s first collegiate tournament, so it’s going to be foreign territory but a great experience for him,” Lieberwirth said. “We know he is going to do some great things and we also know he is going to make mistakes, but it’s going to be a learning experience for him.”

Live stats will be available via www.golfstat.com.

UTEP Women’s Golf to Open Season at MSU/Payne Stewart Memorial

The UTEP women’s golf team will open the 2017-18 season at the MSU/Payne Stewart Memorial on Monday and Tuesday in Springfield, Mo.

It is the first of five fall tournaments for the Miners, who will also participate in the Bob Hurley ORU Shootout (Sept. 25-26 in Tulsa), the NM State Aggie Invitational (Oct. 9-11 in Las Cruces), the FAU Fall Invite (Oct. 16-17 in Boca Raton) and the Little Rock Classic (Oct. 29-31).

UTEP is coming off its best season since the 2011 Conference USA championship run.  The Miners won the Lady Red Wolf Classic in Jonesboro, Ark., and took second at three tournaments.

One of the runner-up finishes came at the MSU/Payne Stewart Memorial, but left a bitter taste after UTEP led by 10 strokes heading into the final round.  The Miners shot 300 as a team in the final round, but South Dakota State shot 287 to claim the title.

South Dakota State is back in the field this year, along with host Missouri State, Creighton, Drake, Drury, Louisiana Monroe, Memphis, Murray State, Oklahoma City, Omaha, South Dakota, UMKC, Wichita State and Williams Woods.

The tournament will be played at the par-71, 5,984-yard Twin Oaks Country Club.  Thirty-six holes will be played on Monday and 18 holes on Tuesday.

The Miners have four returning letterwinners (Abbie Anghelescu, Lily Downs, June Ting, Crystal Wu) and four newcomers.  Shannon O’Dwyer is a sophomore transfer from the United Kingdom.  Audrey Haddad is a redshirt freshman from Switzerland.  The Miners also added true freshmen Valeria Mendizabal and Taylor Stone from Guatemala and Canada, respectively.

Anghelescu, Downs, Haddad, Mendizabal and Ting are in coach Jere Pelletier’s lineup for the first tournament of the season.

“Practice has been going well.  The girls have been working hard,” Pelletier said.  “I’m hoping that we can be competitive in this tournament again and finish in the top five.”

The Miners will lean on vets Downs (75.1 scoring average in 2016-17) and Ting (75.6) for leadership this season.  But Pelletier likes what he sees from his newcomers.

“I’m really excited about Valeria,” he said.  “Taylor has a lot of ability, just not a lot of experience.  Audrey is a really good ball striker.  This will be her first tournament so she may be a little nervous, but she’s a good player.  Shannon just got here, so I really haven’t seen her play yet.  But I’m pretty optimistic about how we’ll play.”

Three UTEP Men’s Golfers Honored for Academics

NORMAN, Ok.- Three UTEP men’s golfers were recognized for their outstanding performance in the classroom as well as the golf course.

Returning seniors Charles Corner and Nicklas Pihl along with recent graduate Frederik Dreier were named Srixon/Cleveland Golf All-America Scholars for Division I, the Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) announced Wednesday. The trio was among the new record number of student-athletes that earned All-America Scholar status, which totaled 260 in Division I.

To be eligible for Srixon/Cleveland Golf All-America Scholar status, an individual must be a junior or senior academically, compete in at least three full years at the collegiate level, participate in 50 percent of his team’s competitive rounds, have a stroke-average under 76.0 in Division I and maintain a minimum cumulative career grade point average of 3.2. High moral character and good standing at the potential recipient’s university is also factored in.

Corner, Pihl, and Dreier were all named to the 2016-17 Conference USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll, for keeping a GPA of 3.0 or better, and have maintained their stay on the honor roll since arriving at UTEP.

Two-time C-USA Golfer of the Year Dreier recorded a team-leading 71.4 stroke average in 13 tournaments while Corner, a C-USA second team selection, finished the year with a 72.6 stroke average while participating in 12 tournaments. Pihl, competing in 12 tournaments, finished the year with a 74.0 stroke average.

The trio was also part of the 2017 Conference USA Championship team and made the trip to the NCAA Washington Regional.

UTEP Men’s Golf Releases 2017-18 Schedule

UTEP men’s golf head coach Scott Lieberwirth announced the 2017-18 slate. Lieberwirth will be entering his seventh season at the helm of the program.

The Miners will begin their pursuit to defend the four tournament titles won last season, including the 2017 Conference USA Championship, when play begins in September. The team is set to tee up on 12 different courses around the country during regular season play. Five tournaments make up the fall schedule and six more contests make up the spring portion of play before postseason begins in April at the Conference USA Championships in Texarkana, Ar.

“I never like to come into the season with too many expectations,” Lieberwirth said. “We’re trying to build this team to be able to be a contender for the conference championship and getting into the NCAA postseason for this year. We loved the success we had last year, but with this being a new year, we have to refocus and rebuild ourselves to be a championship contending team.”

A return to Colorado Springs, Colo. to tee off at the Gene Miranda Invitational on Sept. 8-10 will start the season. The defending champion Miners will meet with host Air Force and other teams to be announced at the Eisenhower “Blue” Golf Course. After a week intermission, the team will return to action to compete in the William H. Tucker Intercollegiate (Sept. 22-23) in Albuquerque, N.M. and follow that with the Marquette Intercollegiate at the Erin Hills Golf Course in Milwaukee, WI on Oct. 1-3. The Marquette Intercollegiate is one of two new tournaments added to the UTEP schedule that the team has not played in.

“We have a good schedule, we’re going to Marquette and that field is extremely strong, one of the strongest we’ll play all year actually,” Lieberwirth said. “That’s going to be a great challenge, it’s [Marquette Intercollegiate] on the same golf course where they just held the US Open last month, at Erin Hills [golf course] in Wisconsin. I know our guys are definitely excited for that.”

UTEP will return to the Southwest to compete in the Herb Wimberly Intercollegiate Oct. 16-17 in Las Cruces, N.M. before they prep to defend their title at the Price’s “Give ‘Em Five” Invitational, their home tournament, Oct. 20-22 at the Butterfield Trail Golf Course.

The spring season will kick start Jan. 29-30 with the Arizona Intercollegiate in Tucson, Ariz., then the UTEP squad will head to Lihue, Kauai, Hawaii for the John Burns Intercollegiate Feb. 15-17. Another trip to Tucson will be fashioned as the Miners will compete National Invitational Tournament Feb. 26-27 to close out the month.

An inaugural appearance at the Bandon Dunes Championship in Bandon, Ore. will begin March 11-13, hosted Gonzaga.

“That’s our only other new tournament that we added this year,” Lieberwirth said. “There’s four or five, different golf courses out in Bandon, Oregon, but they’re regarded as some of the best golf courses in the United States, especially for the link style golf which we don’t see much in the U.S. That’s another tournament that I know our guys are extremely excited about going to.”

The Lone Star Invitational in San Antonio, Texas, will run March 19-20 and the Miners will round out the regular season with the prestigious Western Intercollegiate April 7-8 in Santa Cruz, Calif. The team will then prepare to defend their title at the Conference USA Championships in Arkansas beginning April 22.

“It’s a different team than last year,” Lieberwirth said. “We did some wonderful things from a program perspective, things that we haven’t done in a long time and we want to use that momentum.”

Though they lost their top player, Frederik Dreier, to graduation, the Miners will return three of the five starters from last season’s championship team in seniors Charles Corner and Nicklas Pihl, and junior Aaron Terrazas. Andreas Sorensen has opted to turn professional. The team will also look to senior Prescott Mann, who enjoyed success in eight tournaments during his junior season, to help lead in the line up. Freshman and El Paso native Greg Yellin is expected to prosper as well.

“We have the four upperclassmen who are going to be our stalwarts in our line-up that we know we’re going to have to depend on and they’re going to have to give us solid play,” Lieberwirth said. “I think we have a solid nucleus within those four. Now, after that, we’re going to need someone thats younger and doesn’t have quite the experience to step up and fill that role.
“I would assume this fall we’re going to have numerous players get some action. We have a bunch of younger players that are less experienced but also quite talented that we’re going to have to rely on for help. If we do get some positive play out of these younger players, we could be contending to win and be highly competitive early on.”

Lieberwirth said continuous improvement will be key to keep building the program’s success.

“The biggest thing I don’t want to see is us getting complacent just because we won last year and enjoyed a lot of success,” he said. “There’s no correlation between last year’s success and this year’s, we have to earn it, we have to put in the time and effort that we did and have been doing the past few years and do it again. That process never ends.”

2017-18 Team Schedule

UTEP’s Dreier Earns Regional Golf Accolade

SUGAR GROVE, Il.- UTEP men’s golfer Frederik Dreier earned PING All-Region Division I honors, the Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) announced on Saturday. Dreier, who wrapped up his collegiate career at the NCAA Washington Regional on May 17, earned a spot on the Central Regional list. He was the only UTEP honoree and one of the two Conference USA golfers to be recognized this year, with Middle Tennessee’s Joey Savoie making the Southeast Regional list.

Dreier helped lead the Miners to the Conference USA championship with his seventh place finish, the first conference title since 1985 and only the second championship in program history. The victory ticketed the team to the NCAA Regionals for the first time since 2004, where they finished in ninth place. Dreier shot 7-over 220 (76-68-76) to end his second appearance at the NCAA Regional with a share of 27th place.

A staple in the Miner’s lineup for four years, Dreier played in 46 tournaments while tallying 72.8 collegiate career stroke average. He was named the C-USA Golfer of the Year for the second consecutive year, the first Miner to accomplish the feat and only the third golfer in C-USA to repeat the honor. He also gained C-USA First Team recognition. Dreier has been ranked as high as no. 4 on the Arnold Palmer Cup European rankings and has been on the Danish national team since 2011.

A complete list of the all-region teams are below.

Division I PING All-Region Teams

Northeast
Cole Berman, Georgetown
Bennett Buch, Maryland
Tim Colanta, Maryland
Michael Davis, Princeton
Ryan Davis, Penn State
Robert Deng, Harvard
Eric Dietrich, Connecticut
Anton Frondelius, Wagner
Lloyd Jefferson Go, Seton Hall
Jimmy Hervol, Connecticut
Chris Houston, Rhode Island
JD Hughes, Penn State
Charles Huntzinger, Penn State
Dawson Jones, Rhode Island
Peter Kim, Army
David Kocher, Maryland
Jonathan Lai, Yale
Logan Lowe, George Washington
Sam Madsen, Georgetown
Cole Miller, Penn State
Gen Nagai, Seton Hall
Matthew Naumec, Boston College
Gregory Royston, Harvard
Kendrick Vinar, Harvard
Billy Walthouse, Rhode Island

East
Eric Bae, Wake Forest
Derek Bard, Virginia
James Clark, Georgia Tech
Ryan Cole, James Madison
Patrick Cover, UNCW
Chandler Eaton, Duke
Stephen Franken, NC State
Ben Grif n, North Carolina
Mark Lawrence Jr., Virginia Tech
Isaiah Logue, Liberty
Alexander Matlari, Duke
Jacob McBride, NC State
Paul McBride, Wake Forest
Bryson Nimmer, Clemson
Andrew Novak, Wofford
Matt Oshrine, Duke
William Rainey, College of Charleston
Doc Redman, Clemson
Luke Schniederjans, Georgia Tech
Benjamin Shipp, NC State
Alex Smalley, Duke
Jimmy Stanger, Virginia
Cameron Young, Wake Forest
Carson Young, Clemson
Will Zalatoris, Wake Forest

Southeast
Dawson Armstrong, Lipscomb
John Augenstein, Vanderbilt
Sam Burns, LSU
Trace Crowe, Auburn
Cristobal Del Solar, Florida State
Luis Gagne, LSU
Harry Ellis, Florida State
Broc Everett, Augusta
Lee Hodges, Alabama
Sam Hors eld, Florida
Theo Humphrey, Vanderbilt
Keenan Huskey, South Carolina
Phillip Knowles, North Florida
Patrick Martin, Vanderbilt
Cooper Musselman, Kentucky
Gordon Neale, Florida
Peng Pichaikool, Mississippi State
Brandon Pierce, LSU
Davis Riley, Alabama
Joey Savoie, Middle Tennessee
Matthias Schwab, Vanderbilt
Greyson Sigg, Georgia
Scott Stevens, South Carolina
Braden Thornberry, Ole Miss
Alejandro Tosti, Florida
David Wicks, Jacksonville
Ben Wolcott, Ole Miss

Central
Braden Bailey, Baylor
Zach Bauchou, Oklahoma State
Cameron Champ, Texas A&M
Brad Dalke, Oklahoma
Cooper Dossey, Baylor
Frederik Dreier, UTEP
Doug Ghim, Texas
Gavin Hall, Texas
Chase Hanna, Kansas
Grant Hirschman, Oklahoma
Viktor Hovland, Oklahoma State
Garrett May, Baylor
Max McGreevy, Oklahoma
Fredrik Nilehn, Texas Tech
Zachary Olsen, Oklahoma State
Alvaro Ortiz, Arkansas
Matthew Perrine, Baylor
Chandler Phillips, Texas A&M
Ivan Ramirez, Texas Tech
Hannes Ronneblad, Texas Tech
Scottie Schefer, Texas
Hunter Shattuck Baylor
Sam Stevens, Oklahoma State
Kristoffer Ventura, Oklahoma State
Nick Voke, Iowa State
Hayden Wood, Oklahoma State

Midwest
Fernando Barco, Purdue
Nick Carlson, Michigan
Justin Doeden, Minnesota
Austin Eoff, Purdue
Michael Feagles, Illinois
Will Grimmer, Ohio State
Nick Hardy, Illinois
Timmy Hildebrand, Purdue
Ian Holt, Kent State
Chase Johnson, Kent State
Raymond Knoll, Iowa
Edoardo Lipparelli, Illinois
Ryan Lumsden, Northwestern
Dylan Meyer, Illinois
Kyle Mueller, Michigan
Charlie Netzel, Michigan State
Bjarki Petursson, Kent State
Austin Squires, Cincinnati
Gisli Sveinbergsson, Kent State
Matthew Walker, Iowa
Sam Weatherhead, Michigan State
Daniel Wetterich, Ohio State
Josh Whalen, Kent State
Peyton White, Ohio
Dylan Wu, Northwestern

West
Viraat Badhwar, Stanford
Shintaro Ban, UNLV
Aaron Beverly, Sacramento State
Andrej Bevins, New Mexico
Chun An Yu, Arizona State
Wyndham Clark, Oregon
Roy Cootes, Pepperdine
Sean Crocker, Southern California
Jared du Toit, Arizona State
Patrick Fishburn, BYU
Harry Hall, UNLV
Rico Hoey, Southern California
Franklin Huang, Stanford
Maverick McNealy, Stanford
Collin Morikawa, California
John Oda, UNLV
Corey Pereira, Washington
Rhett Rasmussen, BYU
PJ Samiere, San Diego State
Hayden Shieh, Santa Clara
Justin Suh, Southern California
Sahith Theegala, Pepperdine
Tim Widing, San Franciscio
Brandon Wu, Stanford
Norman Xiong, Oregon
Carl Yuan, Washington

UTEP Men’s Golf Season Ends In Washington

SAMMAMISH, Wa.– The incredible run that was the UTEP men’s golf team’s season came to an end at the 2017 NCAA Washington Regional in Sammamish, Washington on Wednesday.

The Miners shot 32-over 884 (297-294-293) at the Aldarra Golf Club to finish in ninth place, four spots out of the desired fifth place and the opportunity to punch their ticket to the national championships. Top-seeded Southern California, also the no. 1 team in the nation, remained under par to finish first in the regional with 3-under 849 (280-283-286).

Kent State, Florida State, Alabama and Penn State will join Southern California at the NCAA National Championships in Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill. on May 26-31.

Four Miners finished in the top-50 of the field. Charles Corner, who spearheaded the Orange and Blue’s run all tournament, finished in a tie for 22nd with 5-over 218 (70-74-74). Corner collected four birdies in the final round on holes no. 9, no. 10, no. 12, and no. 17 and tied for seventh overall in par-4 scoring (4.11, +3). The junior also shot the team’s lone eagle during round two.

Senior Frederik Dreier made his last appearance as a Miner, shooting 7-over 220 (76-68-76) to finish in a tie for 27th. The two-time C-USA Golfer of the Year led his squad in par-5 scoring (4.75, -3), pars (34) and held the lowest round of any UTEP participant in his second round score of 68. One stroke behind Dreier, Aaron Terrazas finished with a share of 29th after firing 8-over 221 (73-77-71).

The sophomore carded four birdies and tied for fifth overall in par-3 scoring (3.07, +1). Terrazas also tied with Corner for a team-leading eight birdies while collecting 30 total pars.

Andreas Sorensen shot his best round of the tournament to total his 14-over 227 (79-75-73) score, breaking into the top-50 with a tie for 47th place finish. Sorensen collected his tournament-high three birdies in the third round while matching Dreier’s 34 pars to contribute to the teams’ 162 total pars.

Nicklas Pihl shot his lowest score of the three rounds on Wednesday and completed the Miners’ run with a share of 62nd after shooting 18-over 231 (78-78-75). The junior had six total birdies in the tournament.

The Miners, who made their first NCAA Regional appearance as a team since 2004, ended their season with four tournament titles, including the Conference USA Championship. The C-USA title was the first since 1985 and the second conference title ever in program history.

Rain Delays Play, UTEP Men’s Golf Finishes Day Two In Tenth

SAMMAMISH, Wa.- After a nearly four hour rain delay at the start of the second round of the NCAA Washington Regional on Tuesday, the UTEP men’s golf team finished the day in 10th place after shooting 23-over 591 (297-294). Play at the Aldarra Golf Club will conclude tomorrow with the Miners beginning to tee off 9:25 a.m. MT.

The Miners are 11 strokes out of the desired fifth place spot or better, as the top-five finishers in each region will advance to the NCAA National Championships in Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill. on May 26-31. UTEP is trying to advance to the NCAA Championship for the first time since 1995.

Top-seeded Southern California regained the tournament lead after firing 5-under 563 (280-283), while Florida State (2-under 566), Kent State (1-over 569), Penn State (10-over 578) and Alabama (12-over 580) round out the top-five leaders.

Charles Corner continued his strong play, finishing the day with a round of 74 to sit in a tie for 16th with 2-over 144 (70-74). The junior recorded an eagle, his first of the season, on a par 5 on hole no. 3 and birdied on hole no. 6. Senior Frederik Dreier had a huge turnaround after round one, shooting a second round total of 68, the Miners’ lowest round score so far, to share a part of the 16th spot with teammate Corner. Dreier had a huge start from hole no. 10, collecting three consecutive birdies and then adding two more on the front nine.

Aaron Terrazas, who put together a great opening round, slipped down the leader board to tie for 43rd after a second round total of 77. He will enter the third and final round with a tournament total of 8-over 150 (73-77). The sophomore collected a birdie on hole no. 8.

Not too far out of the top-50 is Andreas Sorensen, who is tied for 56th after shooting 75 to bring his total to 12-over 154 (79-75). Sorensen collected 23 pars and birdied on holes no. 1 and no. 4.

Rounding out the Miner’s scorecard is Nicklas Pihl, who shot an identical round of 78 to total his score to 14-over 156 (78-78). The junior led his team in par 3 scoring (3.00, E) and is tied for 62nd.

Live stats for the third and final round of the NCAA Washington Regional will be available via golfstat.com and the UTEP men’s golf Twitter page (@UTEPminergolf) will be updated periodically with scores.

UTEP Men’s Golf Finishes Day One Of NCAA Regional In 11th Place

SAMMAMISH, Wa.- The UTEP men’s golf team finished day one of the 2017 NCAA Washington Regional in 11th place, shooting 13-over 297 at the Aldarra Golf Club (par-71/6,885 yards) in Sammamish, Wash. Leading the 14-team field is Florida State with 6-under 278, who entered the tournament as the fourth seed.

The country’s top-ranked team in Southern California is two strokes behind the leader with 4-under 280 and the Trojans’ Sean Crocker leads the field individually with 7-under 64. Round two will begin tomorrow at 9 a.m. MT.

The top five teams from each of the six regional sites will advance to the national championships at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill. on May 26-31

“We played the par-5s terrible today,” sixth-year head coach Scott Lieberwirth said of his team’s performance. “It’s a difficult course, we had at least six bogeys, if not more on par-5s and out here you can’t do that. Charlie [Corner] had a nice round and Aaron [Terrazas] hung in there pretty tough, but after that we really couldn’t get anything going. We’ve kind of prided ourselves on our consistency top to bottom, but we didn’t get that today. We had two guys that played well and the rest didn’t show.”

Charles Corner led the Miner squad with a round of 70 to sit in a tie for 10th place. The junior birdied on holes no. 5, no. 11, and no. 17, while only bogeying twice to complete the opening round as the only Miner to shoot under par. Corner is also tied for third in par-4 scoring (3.78, -2). Aaron Terrazas is in a tie for 27th with 2-over 73, while matching Corner’s birdies with three of his own no. 7, no. 9, no. 13. Terrazas is tied for third in par-3 scoring (2.80, -1) and bogeyed five times.

In an unusual spot is senior Frederik Dreier, who sits just outside of the top-50 in a tie for 52nd with 5-over 76. Dreier, who is ranked no. 93 in Golfstat rankings, collected a birdie on hole no. 7 and bogeyed six times. Nicklas Pihl shot 7-over 78 for a share of 62nd, while Andreas Sorensen is one stroke behind with 8-over 79 to tie for 67th. Pihl collected two birdies on holes no. 12 and no. 13, while also tying for third in par-3 scoring (2.80, -1).

“We have to do a better job of executing,” Lieberwirth said. “We’ve got a better feel for the golf course now, that will help. We know the types of shots we have to hit, we just have to do a better job. We were kind of all over the place, missing in spots that we shouldn’t have missed and making life much harder than it should have been.”

The tournament will run through Wednesday, live stats will be available via golfstat.com

UTEP Men’s Golf Earns Conference USA Honors, Coach and Golfer of the Year

IRVING, Texas-  For their efforts toward a championship season, the No. 48 UTEP men’s golf team racked up top honors and more in Conference USA awards, including Golfer of the Year and Coach of the Year.

Frederik Dreier, who was the reigning Player of the Year, won the honor again while head coach Scott Lieberwirth earned his first C-USA Coach of the Year.

Dreier and sophomore transfer Aaron Terrazas earned First Team C-USA recognition while junior Charles Corner earned a spot on the Second Team list. The awards are determined by the most recent Golfstat rankings.

All, plus Nicklas Pihl and Andreas Sorensen, were part of the conference championship team that brought UTEP its first Conference USA title and only the second title in program history. The other was a Western Athletic Conference Championship in 1985.

Dreier became the first player in program history and only the third player in Conference USA history to earn back-to-back Player of the Year honors. UAB’s Chris Devlin won it in 1999-2000 and Graeme McDowell earned it again for the Blazers in 2001-2002.

“As a goal, I wanted to win the conference Player of the Year again, it was always in the back of my head, but I never thought about it while I was on the golf course,” Dreier said. “I was just trying to play my game. If my played my best, I knew I could do it again. I was just trying to stick to my golf game and if that was enough then that would be good.”

The ability to lead was what Lieberwirth spoke on with Dreier.
“His [Dreier] leadership the past couple of years has been right up there among the best student-athlete leaders that I’ve been around,” Lieberwirth said. “He’s a great student, great player and a great person too. All of those things are what we’re going to miss about Freddie. There’s not too many players that you’re that sad to see go after four years because its time, but he’s going to be a guy that I’ll defiantly miss being around. He’s meant a lot to this team, to me, and to this program. “

The senior was a staple in the Miners’ line up since his sophomore year, leading the team in top-10 finishes (7) while compiling a 71.3 stroke average this season. He finished in a tie for seventh during the match play portion of the C-USA Championships and defeated his Charlotte opponent, John Gough 2UP in the championship match play.

“I was very honored to win it [Player of the Year] last year, but to win it back-to-back is very special,” Dreier said. “I’ve been practicing hard and fighting hard this year so I’m very happy that it paid off in the end. It’s been a very special year for the team, but to round it out with a conference championship, was very special. I’m very happy with what I’ve accomplished as an individual but also with what the team has accomplished.”

Sixth-year head coach Scott Lieberwirth was honored with his first C-USA Coach of the Year award and his sixth overall. He was a five-time WAC Coach of the Year during his eight-year tenure at NM State prior to UTEP.

“It’s special,” Lieberwirth said of the recognition. “This is a great team that we have and it’s always an honor to be recognized by your peers and receive an award like this, but there are no ‘Coaches of the Year’ awards without having good players. A lot of this goes back to them [players], they’ve done such a great job of working very hard and performing at a very high level.

“These awards are defiantly nice from an individual standpoint but we always do preach that we’re looking for team accolades. I consider this a team award as much as anything. These guys [players] did a lot of the legwork in order for this to happen.”

With Lieberwirth at the helm of the program, the Miners won three team titles in the fall season to add to the one team title won in 2015. Before that, the program had not won a tournament title since 2005.

“I’m so happy for Coach Lieberwirth,” Dreier said. “I know how much he wants his team to do well, in school, on the golf course and in our personal life, so he is helping us a lot and is very deserving of that award. He has been great for us this year, all of the guys are really close to him and he’s a great guy as well. There are so many good things to say about him but I’m really happy for him.”

Terrazas, who transferred from Oklahoma and joined the Miners in the spring, earned first team honors after a stellar spring season that saw him as UTEP’s top finisher two times. The sophomore finished at the top of the UTEP scorecard at the John Burns Intercollegiate with 1-over 217 (74-71-72) and then tied with Dreier as the top finisher at the Lone Star Invitational. He finished in the top-50 at the Conference USA Championships at 35th with 4-over 220 (73-73-74) and defeated his Southern Miss opponent, Tyler Young, 1UP in the semifinal match play.

Corner’s breakout season began this spring, where he notched five top-50 finishes, and added four top-10 finishes.The junior topped his regular season run with a sixth-place finish during the stroke play portion of the conference championships with 3-over 219 (73-70-76), leading the team, and defeated both his match play opponents. His clutch 1UP finish against Southern Miss’s Matt Lorenz helped secure UTEP’s victory in the semifinals. Corner was also the top UTEP finisher at the prestigious Western Intercollegiate, edging into the top-10 with 2-over 212 (72-69-71) that earned him a Conference USA Player of the Week honor the week of April 12.

The Miners won the automatic bid to the NCAA Regional tournament beginning May 15, where 81 teams and 45 individuals will be selected to compete in the six NCAA Men’s Regional Championship sites.

“I’m just excited for this group to get this championship,” Lieberwirth said. “We’re solely focused on doing what we can to continue our season as long as we can, meaning getting through the Regional and into the National Championship.”

2016-17 CONFERENCE USA MEN’S GOLF AWARDS

Golfer of the Year: Frederik Dreier, UTEP

Freshman of the Year: Ilari Saulo, Middle Tennessee

Coach of the Year: Scott Lieberwirth, UTEP

First Team

Joey Savoie, Middle Tennessee

Ian Snyman, North Texas

R.J. Keur, UAB

Frederik Dreier, UTEP

Aaron Terrazas, UTEP

Second Team

Cory Churchman, North Texas

Thomas Rosenmueller, North Texas

Taylor Eyster, UAB

Charles Corner, UTEP

Zander Lozano, UTSA

All-Freshman Team

John Gough, Charlotte

Matty Lamb, Charlotte

Conor Purcell, Charlotte

Ilari Saulo, Middle Tennessee

Chip Thomas, Middle Tennessee

C-USA Champions! UTEP Downs Southern Miss, Charlotte to Win Golf Crown

TEXARKANA – The UTEP men’s golf team defeated Southern Miss (4-1, semifinals) and Charlotte (4-1, finals) in match-play format to win the 2017 Conference USA Men’s Golf Championship at the Texarkana Country Club on Tuesday.

It is the first conference title since 1985 and only the second in program history. The Orange and Blue also punched their ticket to the NCAA Regionals for the first time as a team since 2004.

It was the fitting conclusion to the three-day event for the Miners, who notched the top seed in match play after their first-place showing in stroke play (15-over 879; 287-294-298).

“You have a lot of moving parts going on,” sixth-year head coach Scott Lieberwirth said. “It’s tough to judge [the match]. The best part is we got the first two points on the board. Knowing that we had leads in two other matches, we knew we just needed to hang on and close out one of those matches.”

Battling in a match that was too close to call early, Nicklas Pihl got the Miners off to a solid start in the championship vs. Charlotte. The match with the 49ers’ Conor Purcell was all square through eight holes before Pihl found another gear. He won two of the next three holes to go 2UP through the 11th hole, and Purcell could never recover.

UTEP pushed its team advantage to 2-0, thanks to Charles Corner knocking off the 49ers’ Matty Lamb, 2UP. Corner started fast by taking the first two holes, an edge he maintained through the turn. Lamb’s comeback started on the back nine with wins at both 10 and 13 to make the match all square. Corner remained steadfast, winning both the 15th and 18th holes to put Lamb away.

Charlotte tried to claw back into the championship with Tyler Young edging Aaron Terrazas, 1UP. The match was all square through 15 holes but Young found the necessary separation after carding a 3 and Terrazas recorded a 4 on the 17th hole. Both golfers fired 4s on the 18th hole to give the 49ers a team point.

The lone senior on the team Frederik Dreier then took center stage. The reigning C-USA Golfer of the Year was in a back and forth match with Charlotte’s John Gough. All squared through 10 holes, Dreier won three of the next five holes to take control of the dual. Gough claimed hole No. 16 to get within two, but Dreier prevailed, sending the Miners into celebration.

“It was very emotional,” Dreier said. “This being my last conference [tournament] ever and to win it with the guys was amazing.”

Those sentiments were expounded upon by Lieberwirth.

“I think fittingly, it was Frederik Dreier’s match that clinched it for us, him being a senior, him being the reigning Conference USA Player of the Year,” Lieberwirth said. “It couldn’t have been a better ending for us to have Freddie finish it.”

Andreas Sorensen lost the first two holes to the C-USA individual medalist Seth Gandy before a stunning reversal. He squared with Gandy by the fifth hole and vaulted out to 3UP through hole No. 13. Gandy’s rally came too little, too late, as Sorensen won 1&2.

The Miners made it to the final round of match play after a hard-fought 4-1 win over Southern Miss. The tournament was shortened a day due to a forecast of inclement weather on Wednesday.

“It [weather] forced us to have to play two rounds in back-to-back days, which is something we never do,” Lieberwirth said. “Without question, fatigue was a factor for both teams. We were fortunate to get to that championship match. It’s difficult for everybody involved, but our guys fought through it, they continued to play well throughout the afternoon. They just did a great job.”

Pihl set the tone against the fourth-seeded Southern Miss Golden Eagles with a 3&2 conquest of Walker Kesterson. It was all squared through the opening six holes before Pihl won two of the next three to make the turn 2UP. The Golden Eagle briefly cut into the lead on hole No. 11, but Pihl recovered immediately on No. 12 and never looked back.

Sorensen raced out to a huge lead, taking each of the first five holes from the Golden Eagles’ Derick Kelting. The margin remained five heading into the 13th hole, before Kelting mounted a rally, winning four of the next five to make the dual tight going into the 18th hole. Sorensen did not flinch however, matching Kelting with a 4 and winning the dual.

USM’s Ryan Argotsinger and UTEP’s Dreier battled back-and-forth early on, with Argotsinger 2UP at the turn. Dreier’s aspirations of a comeback didn’t come to fruition, with Argotsinger posting a 5&4 victory.

As it turned out, that proved to be the lone team point in the match for Southern Miss. The Miners clinched the team win thanks to Corner’s 1UP vanquishing of Matt Lorenz. Terrazas downed Matt Codd 1 & 1 to punctuate the victory.

Corner quickly dug himself an early hole, with Lorenz jumping out to a 2UP lead through three holes. Corner responded brilliantly, tasting victory on six of the next seven holes to stand 4UP through the 11th hole. Lorenz fought back and eventually clawed back to all square through 17 holes but Corner won the 18th hole.

It was a compelling match between Terrazas and Codd, with action all square through 16 holes. Terrazas found a way to get it done, though, carding a 3 while Codd was saddled with a 5 on the 17th hole.

The NCAA Regionals are slated to begin on May 15.

“I feel like we have got a lot of grown men,” Lieberwirth said. “They act mature, I think they play the game the right way and I think they act the right way, which is something that we want from our program. I couldn’t be any prouder than I am right now.”

Miners Win Stroke Play Portion of C-USA Tourney, Notch Top Seed In Match Play

TEXARKANA – The back nine of the Texarkana Country Club golf course was the breakaway point for the UTEP men’s golf team as they pulled away from their tie with North Texas to take sole possession of first place in the final round of stroke play at the Conference USA Men’s Golf Championships and the top seed going into tomorrow’s match play.

The Miners shot 15-over 879 (287-294-298) to best North Texas, who came in second with 19-over 883 (283-297-303) and third place Charlotte, who shot 28-over 892 (289-292-311). Middle Tennessee and Southern Miss tied for fourth with 29-over 893 and will battle in a one-hole playoff tomorrow at 7:30 a.m. CT for the fourth and final spot in the match play portion of the tournament.

The winner will face UTEP while Charlotte and North Texas will compete in the other semifinals match play, with the winners battling for the C-USA team championship.

The first round of match play at the Texarkana Country Club (par 72/6,969 yards) tees off at 7:30 a.m. CT concluding with the second round at 12:30 p.m. CT to determine the 2017 Conference USA Men’s Golf Champion.

Charlotte senior Seth Gandy fired a 2-under 214 (67-71-76) to take individual medalist honors.

“First things first, our goal was to get to the match play, whatever seed it was,” sixth-year head coach Scott Lieberwirth said. “Fortunately, we are the No. 1 seed heading into match play, but tomorrow everything is wiped clean. We have to come out and take care of business in the first match. We’re not sure who that’ll be, the playoff [between Middle Tennessee and Southern Miss] will run tomorrow morning. Whoever we get, we know we’re going to get their best shot. We have to show up ready to go.”

The Miners were the only team in the tournament to have a three round total below 300.

“Throughout the day, and in the afternoon especially, we had a pretty large buffer on those teams trying to make the match play cutoff,” Lieberwirth said. “The golf course was playing extremely difficult this afternoon, the greens were extremely firm and fast as well, that made for very difficult scoring, plus being the second round of the day that these student athletes were playing, fatigue was setting in. It was an extremely long day, but I thought our guys really hung in well. We played that back nine well. I think that was more than anything why we pulled away. We just kind of hung in there and kept playing reasonably well. North Texas and Charlotte both struggled coming in late, which, to be honest, was not hard to do, it was really tough out there.”

The last time the Miners made the match play portion of the Conference USA Championships was in 2015. Though they fell to UAB that year, UTEP’s finish of third place marked the best placing in program history since the institution entered Conference USA in 2006. The team just missed out on last year’s match play when they placed fifth in stroke play.

All five Miners placed in the top-50, but three placed in the top-10. Junior Charles Corner spearheaded the Miners’ run, firing 3-over 219 (73-70-76) to finish in sixth place, five strokes out of first place. Corner made birdie on hole No. 16 in the final round and his second round score of 70 was the lowest of the day for the Miners.

Frederik Dreier and Aaron Terrazas helped the Miners’ first place effort, tying for seventh with 4-over 220. Dreier shot a round of 77 and 72, collecting four birdies, two on the front nine and two on the back nine while bogeying four times on the difficult back nine. Terrazas fired 73 and 74 while tallying a birdie on hole No. 8 and only bogeying once on the back nine.

“They were solid,” Lieberwirth said of Corner, Dreier and Terrazas. “Especially the spring, we haven’t had any great individual performances, meaning top-5s or wins, but we have had consistent, solid play out of all of those guys. They were great. Freddie got a couple of unlucky breaks on the last nine holes, but he played very well. Aaron was solid, start to finish, but you know I feel like we’ve got a group of very solid players that I trust and that I feel confident going into tomorrow with.”

Breaking into the top-20 was Andreas Sorensen, who shot 7-over 223 (70-77-76), finishing with four birdies, three of which came in the third round, to finish with a share of 17th place. Nicklas Pihl rounded out the Miners’ scorecard in a tie for 42nd with 17-over 233 (79-74-80). The junior saw his best round of the tournament in his score of 74 in round two.

“I’m proud of how my guys played,” Lieberwirth said. “They did a great job. I wouldn’t say that was the best day of golf that we’ve played all year, but that was some of the toughest golf we’ve played, without question. I credit my guys for hanging tough.The scores didn’t look great, but the effort that was given and the way that we fought over the last nine holes, I’m very proud of that.”

The Conference USA men’s golf champion will be crowned following the results of the second round of match play. Live stats will be available via golfstat.com.

“You have a good field in this conference, as you can see by the scores,” Lieberwirth said. “We understand nothing is given at this point. In match play, anything can happen. We just have to show up tomorrow and be the better team.”

2017 Conference USA Men’s Golf Championships Stroke Play Final:

Team — Score
1. UTEP – 287-294-298=879 (+15)
2. North Texas – 283-297-303=883 (+19)
3. Charlotte – 289-292-311=892 (+28)
T4. Middle Tennessee – 294-292-307=893 (+29)
T4. Southern Miss – 296-299-298=893 (+29)
6. Marshall – 297-299-304=900 (+36)
7. UTSA – 302-300-300=902 (+38)
8. UAB – 295-298-310=903 (+39)
9. Rice – 299-308-298=905 (+41)
10. WKU – 299-306-305=910 (+46)
11. Louisiana Tech – 307-302-310=919 (+55)
12. Old Dominion – 307-296-317=920 (+56)
13. Florida Atlantic – 307-314-318=939 (+75)

Miners Shoot Under Par In Round One Of C-USA Tournament

TEXARKANA – The second seeded UTEP men’s golf team opened the Conference USA Men’s Golf Championship with a bang, posting 1-under 287 with a field-leading 17 birdies for a second place spot, four strokes behind leader North Texas. Competition at the Texarkana Country Club (par 72/6,969 yards) will resume tomorrow, April 24, with the Miners teeing off on hole one at 9:20 a.m. CT alongside Charlotte and North Texas.

Due to forecasted inclement weather on Wednesday, the tournament is now scheduled to conclude on Tuesday.

All teams will play their final two rounds tomorrow, Monday, April 24, with tee times starting at 8 a.m. CT. Following the two rounds of stroke play to determine the individual medalist, the four best teams will advance to match play on Tuesday, April 25. The first round of match play tees off at 7:30 a.m. CT concluding with the second round at 12:30 p.m. CT to determine the 2017 Conference USA Men’s Golf Champion.

“We had a nice start to the tournament today,” head coach Scott Lieberwirth said. “North Texas shot five-under, they played a great round and deserve the lead right now, but we’ve got two more rounds of stroke play to go and I think we have plenty of time to catch up. We’re in for a really big test and I’m pleased we got off on the right foot in the first round.”

With his short game on point, sophomore Andreas Sorensen led the Miners’ charge on day one, firing a round of 70 while collecting four birdies to tie for fifth place. The sophomore had back to back birdies on holes No. 7 and No. 8 and scored two more on holes No. 12 and No. 16, while bogeying only twice. Sorensen’s strong play puts him three strokes behind tourney leader Seth Gandy of Charlotte, who shot five-under 67.

Frederik Dreier was the only other Miner to shoot under par on the difficult course, shooting 71 to land in the individual top-10 with a share of seventh. Dreier, ranked No. 97 in Golfstat, pared 11 times and birdied on holes No. 1, No. 3, No. 8, No. 12. The senior had three bogeys.

Both Charles Corner and Aaron Terrazas shot 73 to finish just outside of the top-10 in a tie for 13th. Corner had consecutive birdies on holes No. 7 and No. 8 and added one more on hole No. 12, while Terrazas collected four birdies on holes No. 1, No. 7, No. 12, and No. 16 and nine pars.

Junior Nicklas Pihl’s score kept all the Miners in the top 50. Pihl shot a round of 79 to sit in a seven-way tie for 50th, scoring two birdies and bogeying three times.

The team’s round of 287 was its sixth-best opening round this season, though on a much more difficult course. The Miners shot an opening round of 302 at the C-USA tournament at the Texarkana Country Club last year.

“The golf course if difficult, the green was firm,” Lieberwirth said. “It was much warmer than yesterday. The wind wasn’t as severe as yesterday, but there’s a lot of swirls that you feel on the ground. That made club selection difficult, and add that to the firmness of the greens, it was difficult to hit greens in regulation. I thought we did a reasonably good job of that [hitting greens] and I think we also did a good job of getting it up and down when we had the opportunity to.

“Even one-under par for us out here on this course is a good score. Tomorrow the weather is supposed to be a little bit better as far as lighter winds, so I would expect the lower scores to be a little bit more possible.”

The final two rounds of stroke play begin tomorrow at 8 a.m. CT with Rice, UTSA and WKU starting on hole 10 while play on hole one begins concurrently with Marshall and Southern Miss. UAB and Middle Tennessee play as a twosome from the first hole at 8:40 a.m. CT, while Florida Atlantic, Louisiana Tech and Old Dominion will go off from the back nine at 8:50 a.m. CT.

Live stats are available at Golfstat.com.

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