April 24, 2008
The University of New Mexico men's golf team shot a 12-over 296 and is in seventh place after the opening round of the 2008 Mountain West Conference Championships today. No. 16 UNLV leads the event at 3-under (281) at the Tucson National Golf Club (par-71, 7,136 yards) in Tucson, Ariz. Freshman Tom Carlson was the low Lobo of the day, carding a 1-over 72 in his opening round.
New Mexico has won four of the last five MWC titles and needs this win to advance to postseason play but finds itself 15 strokes behind the Rebels. Carlson had a very steady round in his first appearance at the MWC Championships. He went out in an even-par 35 with two birdies and two bogeys in his first nine holes. He rebounded from back-to-back bogeys on 11 and 12 to post a birdie on the par-5 15th. Three straight pars to end the day gave him a 72, tying for 15th place in the individual race. Carlson is five strokes off the pace set by San Diego State's Aaron Goldberg (67, -4).
Junior Jon Sauer and sophomore Kyle Nielsen both shot 3-over 74s in the first round and are tied for 26th. Sauer struggled in his first nine holes, going out with a 3-over 38 and four bogeys. He got back to even par with birdies on 10, 11 and 15, before a double bogey on 16 and a bogey on 17 left him at 3-over for his round. Nielsen had a steadier 18 with five bogeys and two birdies. He was 1-over through 11 holes, but bogeys on 12 and 13 left him at 3-over for the day.
Sophomore Brandon Putnam is currently alone in 36th place at five over after shooting a 76 today. He was even par after consecutive birdies on 10 and 11 and was only 1-over through 15 holes. However, he gave back four more strokes in the final three holes, including a double-bogey on 16, to finish with a 76.
Junior Steve Saunders, the most experienced Lobo making the trip, had a rough outing with an 11-over 82 today. He doubled four of five holes between 9 and 13 on his way to his highest score in seven rounds at the MWC Championships.
The Lobos will compete in the second round tomorrow beginning with tee times at 8:00 a.m. (M.D.T.). Live scoring will again be available via GolfStat on GoLobos.com.