Tritons Shine in First Round, Struggle Late in Second at CCAA Men's Golf Championships
CHICO, Calif. - Starting with a strong first round but struggling late in the second Monday, the University of California San Diego men's golf team is currently in ninth place after the opening day of action at the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Championships at Butte Creek Country Club.
UC San Diego was tied for second place after firing a 296 (+8) in the opening round. However, the Tritons shot a 311 (+23) in the second round for a total of 607 (+31), dropping them seven spots in the team standings.
Individually, Adam Navigato (Solana Beach/Torrey Pines HS) sits in the top-20, currently tied for 17th with a 150, 6-over par on the par-72, 7,000-yard course. The sophomore shot a 73 in round one and followed with a 77 in the later round. Navigato eagled the par-5 13th hole in the first round, one of four total eagles on the day.
Also playing for the Tritons, sophomore Hayden Hui (74-77--151) is tied for 24th, sophomore Jacob Johnson (75-78--153) and senior Mateusz Kucz (74-79--153) are tied for 31st, and sophomore Justin Woo (San Diego/Torrey Pines HS) (80-80--160) is 43rd in the 45-player field. Johnson averaged a 2.88 on par-3 holes, the second-best average of the day, while Kucz averaged a 4.63 on par-5 holes, also the second-best. Kucz was UC San Diego's top finisher at the 2017 CCAA Championships, tying for 20th.
Cal State Monterey Bay, ranked 16th nationally, is in first place with a 589 (+13), just one stroke in front of No. 13 Chico State (590, +14). The Wildcats jumped up four spots as they were sixth after the first round.
Chico State's Kelley Sullivan, last year's individual champion, is in front of the pack with a 1-under 143. He was tied for sixth following round one. Kelley is the lone player under par, but four others are nipping at his heels at even par.
"The tournament was very tightly-bunched with three strokes separating the second-place team and the last-place team with five holes to go," said UC San Diego head coach Jim Ragan. "We played those last five holes poorly and now have some ground to make up to advance to the match play portion of the championship. We are in reach of that and will have to play very well tomorrow to move up the leaderboard."
The course played to a 75.57 stroke average Monday.
The third and final round of stroke play, which will determine the conference's individual champion, gets underway Tuesday at 7:30 a.m. The four highest-finishing teams in the nine-team field advance to medal/match play semifinals on Tuesday afternoon. The semifinal winners go head-to-head in a medal/match play final on Wednesday, April 25, which will decide the league's team champion and automatic qualifier for the NCAA Division II Men's Golf Championships.
All action from Butte Creek can be followed with live scoring.