AUBURN, Ala. – The UNCG men’s golf team finished seventh overall in the program’s first-ever appearance in an NCAA Regional and came up just two shots short of advancing to the NCAA Championship. The Spartans turned in their best round of the week Saturday, posting a 4-over par 292 at the Auburn University Club. UNCG was the only non-ranked team in contention for a top-five showing and returns all seven members of the team next season as this week’s lineup included one junior, two sophomores and two freshmen.
“This was a great experience for our guys and I could not be more proud of our team,” head coach Terrance Stewart said. “This was our program’s first-ever appearance in an NCAA Regional and our guys handled the event head on, without reservation. This was a great learning experience for our young team as everyone on our roster will be back next season. We were one of the youngest teams in any NCAA Regional this year and we gave ourselves a chance to advance, which is all you can ask for.”
The Spartans ended the tournament 22-over par at 886 (298-296-292), tied with No. 36 BYU and one shot behind No. 25 New Mexico at 885. No. 13 Texas was the final team to advance to the NCAA Championship, placing fifth overall with a 20-over par 884. Rounding out the qualifiers for the championship include No. 1 Alabama (853), No. 37 Kennesaw State (875), No. 23 Auburn (878) and No. 12 Virginia Tech (882).
Those five teams along with individual champion Marco Iten of Austin Peay with an 8-under par 208 (71-70-67). The finals will be conducted May 23-28 at Prairie Dunes Country Club in Hutchinson, Kansas with Wichita State acting as the host institution.
Junior Roy Dixon (Salisbury, N.C./Salisbury) led the Spartans Saturday and all week at the NCAA Regionals. Dixon tied for the team-low on the week Saturday with a 1-under par 71 to finish tied for 15th overall at 2-over par 218 (72-75-71). He was consistent all week, including in round three as he posted 15 par scores to go along with birdies on No. 12 and No. 16, while bogeying on No. 5. He was tied for the team lead with nine birdies in the 54-hole event (Coalson).
Sophomore Taylor Coalson (Dobson, N.C./North Surry) finished the week tied for 25th overall with a 5-over par 221 (71-75-75). Coalson posted three birdies on the day to go along with six bogeys and nine par scores. Freshman Jake McGlone (Charlotte, N.C./Charlotte Latin) continued his strong final two rounds of the tournament, posting a 2-over par 74 Saturday. McGlone finished tied for 35th overall with an 8-over par 224 (79-71-74).
Freshman Carter Jenkins (Raleigh, N.C./Leesville Road) placed 44th with an 11-over par 227 (77-75-75). Jenkins had a tough start to the day with four straight bogeys before hitting three birdies and two bogeys over the last 14 holes.
Sophomore Luke Haithcock (Burlington, N.C./Williams) rebounded from a tough second round and posted his best 18-holes of the week with an even-par 72. Haithcock had an up-and-down outing with five birdies and five bogeys on the afternoon. He finished the regional tied for 62nd overall with a 229 (78-79-72).
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