May 18, 2007
The University of New Mexico men's golf team posted a 6-under 282 (68-69-72-73) in the second round of the NCAA West Regional in Tempe, Ariz., today. The Lobos are currently tied for eighth in the team race with Stanford and Arizona at 19-under after two rounds. The top-10 teams after tomorrow's third round advance to the NCAA Championships.
Senior Charlie Beljan again led the Lobos with a 4-under 68 in his second round. He is 11-under for the weekend and tied for third in the individual race. Benjamin Alvarado of tourney host Arizona State and Southern Cal's Jamie Lovemark share a one-stroke lead at 12-under. Beljan started on the back side today, posting three birdies and a bogey to finish his first nine 2-under. He equaled that feat with three more birdies and one bogey on the back.
Sophomore Steve Saunders also had a strong showing today, posting a 69 for his fourth straight round in the 60's. Saunders finished strong with four birdies in his last seven holes. He is tied for 15th overall at 7-under after 36 holes.
Freshman Kyle Nielsen shot an even-par 72 today. He posted a double-bogey on his 13th hole, but came back with two more birdies to level his score. Sophomore Nick Geyer posted a 73 while junior Robb Bierbaum finished with a 74.
"We started out slow today and were playing well early on," stated UNM head coach Glen Millican. "We finished strong and made some birdies down the stretch that got us back in it. If we play our game tomorrow we have a good chance at qualifying. It is going to be a shootout because there are a lot of teams bunched together trying to get in that final 10."
UCLA leads the event at 35-under. UNM has a two shot advantage over 11th place Vanderbilt and needs to hold on tomorrow to advance to the NCAA Championships. The top two individuals on non-advancing teams also move on to the NCAAs.