Pepperdine Men’s Golf Qualifies For NCAA Championships
May 15, 2019, AUSTIN, Texas – The Pepperdine men’s golf team is headed to the NCAA Championships for the 10th time in program history as the Waves earned a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Austin Regional on Wednesday.
The Waves got off to a great start with Monday’s first round, and that largely turned out to be the difference in allowing the squad to be one of the five advancing teams. Pepperdine finished with a three-day total of a 6-over 858 (278-290-290) at the par-71 University of Texas Golf Club. The Waves were tied for first after the first round and still had a 10-shot margin over sixth place heading into Wednesday.
That advantage slowly dwindled over the course of the third round, and according to Golfstat, the Waves briefly slid into sixth place late in the day when they were overtaken by both USC and Arkansas. But the Waves had a solid finish, as on the final two holes, the four scoring players recorded seven pars and one bogey to put Pepperdine into the clubhouse at +6.
On the other side of the course, with Pepperdine already done, the final three holes saw Arkansas go 10-over and USC go 3-over, securing the Waves’ top-five finish. Pepperdine finished two shots better than the Trojans and seven better than the Razorbacks.
Joe Highsmith led the way for the Waves. His fourth-place finish became the best-ever by a Pepperdine freshman in regional play.
Pe pperdine, the 1997 NCAA champion, last played in the NCAA Championships in 2017, when they finished 13th. The Waves were the #3 seed among the 14 teams at the NCAA Austin Regional.
- Freshman Joe Highsmith (Lakewood, Wash./Bellarmine Prep) came in fourth place with a 6-under 207 (68-70-69). He went below-par all three days. During today’s 2-under round, he recorded five birdies, including three in a four-hole stretch on the back nine. It was Highsmith’s fourth top-10 result of the season – tying the Pepperdine freshman single-season record – and his best finish of the year. With 16 below-par rounds this season, he’s at #2 on the freshman chart.
- Junior Joshua McCarthy (Danville, Calif./De La Salle HS) tied for 11th with a 1-under 212 (67-71-74). He had two birdies in his final round. It was his team-best eighth top-20 finish of the season. McCarthy qualified as an individual for last year’s NCAA Championships, so he will be playing at nationals for the third time in three years.
- Sophomore RJ Manke (Lakewood, Wash./Bellarmine Preparatory School) tied for 25th at 218 (71-75-72). He birdied his first two holes today and finished with a total of three birdies and an eagle on the par-4 seventh hole.
- Junior Clay Feagler (Laguna Niguel, Calif./Dana Hills HS) tied for 38th at 222 (73-74-75). He had two birdies on Wednesday.
- Senior Roy Cootes (Rolling Hills, Calif./Palos Verdes HS) also tied for 38th at 222 (72-75-75). He had two birdies in the final round.
The NCAA Championships are being held at Blessings Golf Club in Fayetteville, Arkansas, from May 24-29.
Team Scores: 1. Texas 278-274-275=827; 2. TCU 280-292-275=847; 3. Clemson 284-284-283=851; 4. Pepperdine 278-290-290=858; 5. USC 290-288-282=860; 6. Arkansas 282-291-292=865; 7. Iowa 295-285-290=870; 8. Marquette 290-297-293=880; 9. San Jose State 291-303-294=888; 10. UMKC 295-302-293=890; 11. Saint Mary’s 307-290-294=891; 12. Sam Houston State 303-302-291=896; 13. Army 309-305-296=910; 14. Prairie View A&M 309-305-310=924.
Top Individuals: T1. Stefano Mazzoli (TCU) 71-69-64=204; T1. Steven Chervony (Texas) 72-66-66=204; T1. Cole Hammer (Texas) 70-68-66=204; 4. Joe Highsmith (Pepperdine) 68-70-69=207; 5. Sam Kim (USC) 69-71-69=209.
FROM PEPPERDINE ATHLETIC COMMUNICATIONS (copy by Roger Horne)