SCOTTSDALE, Arizona – The state of Arizona carded 23 birdies to climb the NCAA championship rankings at Grayhawk Golf Club on Saturday.
The PGA Tour winner and former Sun Devil hoofed all 18 holes after senior Kevin Yu, who shot 1:71, and stayed afterward to congratulate the team on a 2: 278 performance that put Arizona in the top eight at 2 Over.
” They were hard to watch because I wanted to tune in, yell at them and give them help and advice, but it was a great time out there to root them, “Reavie said. “It was the first time since I was a kid that I really played golf like that. I can see parents get nervous when they watch their kids play.”
Reavie, one of two professional devils who watched the action on Saturday (top 100 player Chan Kim was the other) competed in three NCAA championships for the Sun Devils. At the 2001 NCAA Championship in Durham, North Carolina, he was fourth and two years later in Stillwater, Oklahoma, ninth. He turned pro in 2004 and returned to school six years later to complete his political science degree. (Chez for Prez?)
He said he was impressed with the way today’s college players not only hit the ball but also manage their nerves.
“It’s refreshing and it’s great for seeing me because it encourages me to keep working and try to get better, “said Reavie. “These guys aren’t scared, they’re ready to do birdies and recharge and see what happens.”
No player illustrated this point better on Saturday than Ryggs Johnston of Arizona, who is in the previous round of the tournament carded nine birdies and fired a 7-under-63. He’s just three behind lone leader, Oklahoma Bo Jin, who sits 65 under at 8 after a second round. Arizona state coach Matt Thurmond describes Johnston as “a low-numbered shooting machine “. In his first two qualifying rounds this spring, Johnston also shot 63 at Papago and Southern Dunes.
“But 63 on this course today in these conditions is a whole new level for him,” added Thurmond. “I think a 68 is a world class round right now, and to shoot 63 other teams and players will look at it and say,” How is that even possible? “
Johnston’s recipe for success: choose good lines, make firm contact, and punch an 8 to 12 foot bundle. It doesn’t hurt to have professional winners backed either.
” If we [Chez and Chan] out here, “said Johnston,” it gives you a boost of energy like, hey, these guys really take care of us. “
FROM Associated Press
FROM Mercer Baggs
BY Ryan Lavner
Oklahoma freshman Bo Jin is building a clinic at a tough Grayhawk Golf Club in two rounds of the NCAA championship.
Texas junior Pierceson Coody was forced out of the NCAA championship on Saturday due to illness knock out, and the Longhorns only have work left to get a 54-hole cut.
Grayhawk played hard on Monday, especially in the afternoon as some top teams – Pepperdine, Oklahoma, and Florida State – played well and others – mostly Texas – don’t.