WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Augusta State makes its 10th appearance on collegiate golf’s grandest stage Wednesday morning when the Jaguars tee off in the 111th NCAA Championships at the Birck Boilermaker Golf Complex, Kampen Course on the campus of Purdue University.
ASU wrapped up its second practice round Tuesday afternoon at the par-72, 7,465-yard, Pete-Dye designed course. The Jaguars will be the No. 17 seed for the NCAA Championships and will be paired with No. 16 Oregon and No. 18 UC Irvine for the first two rounds on Wednesday and Thursday.
ASU earned a berth in the NCAA Championships for the third time in six seasons under head coach Josh Gregory courtesy of its second-place finish at the NCAA East Regional in Chattanooga, Tenn., on Saturday, May 17. The Jaguars posted a 54-hole total of 20-under 832, second only to regional champion Georgia and the fifth-lowest total in the history of the ASU men’s golf program.
Gregory will go with the same lineup he used for the East Regional. Sophomore Mitch Krywulycz will lead ASU out on the course at 7:00 a.m. (Eastern) off the No. 1 tee, followed by sophomore Jake Amos at 7:09, junior Tarik Can at 7:19 and senior Keith Guest at 7:28, with freshman Henrik Norlander anchoring the Jags’ lineup at 7:38.
“This golf course will be as stern a test as any we’ve seen,” Gregory said. “It’s a heck of a layout and the teams who play well here will have definitely earned it. Hopefully, all the confidence and momentum we’ve gained from playing well down the stretch will help us get around the course. We’re excited about our chances and ready to get started.”
Guest owns the team lead in stroke average at 71.46 – the third lowest in school history in a single season -- while Norlander has two individual victories and paces the squad with six top-20 finishes. Can is coming off a tie for 17th at the regional while Krywulycz posted his career-low rounds at the regional with a pair of one-under 70’s. Amos earned his first collegiate victory in the fall at the Mason Rudolph Intercollegiate and, along with Krywulycz, has played in all but two events for ASU.
The NCAA Championships features a 72-hole, four-day format that wraps up on Saturday, May 31. Stanford is the defending national champion, while sophomore Jamie Lovemark of Southern California returns to defend the individual title he claimed as a freshman.
Live scoring of the NCAA Championships will be available at www.golfstat.com.
AMONG THE NATION’S ELITE ... With its 10 appearances in the NCAA Championships in the last 16 years, Augusta State has established itself as one the nation’s elite college golf programs ... ASU has advanced to NCAA Regional play in 10 of the last 11 and 13 of the last 16 years ... Over that span, only a dozen schools can boast of more trips to the collegiate golf’s grandest stage than ASU ... The Jags had a streak of three straight trips to the NCAA Championships snapped when they finished 19th at the 2004 NCAA East Regional at The Course at Yale in New Haven, Conn. ... Of ASU’s last four trips to the “Big Dance”, (2001, 2002, 2003 and 2005) the Jags have finished seventh, fifth, seventh and 10th ... Their fifth-place showing -- the best in school history -- came at Ohio State Golf Club’s Scarlet Course during the 2001-02 season.
BIG MO ... The Jaguars are definitely playing their best golf of the 2007-08 season down the stretch ... ASU is coming off third place and back-to-back second-place finishes in its last three events at the Palisades Collegiate Classic, the Cavalier Classic and the NCAA East Regional, respectively ... The Jags carded their best finish of the season -- a runnerup effort -- on April 27 in the Cavalier Classic at Birdwood Golf Course in Charlottesville, Va.
MUSICAL CHAIRS ... The Jaguars used nine different lineups in their 10 regular-season events ... In fact, ASU’s lineup for the East Regional only played together once during the regular season, finishing 11th at the Hootie at Bulls Bay Intercollegiate on March 25 in Awendaw, S.C. ... Freshman Henrik Norlander is the only Jaguar to play in all 11 events this season ... Fifth-year senior Keith Guest made his 2007-08 debut at the Hootie at Bulls Bay Intercollegiate and has played in five straight events.
MEDALIST MEN ... The Jags have had two players earn individual victories this season ... Freshman Henrik Norlander became the first freshman in school history to win twice in his rookie season when he captured the CordeValle Collegiate in the fall and won the Cavalier Classic on April 27 ... Sophomore Jake Amos claimed the Mason Rudolph Intercollegiate on Oct. 23, 2007.
INTERNATIONAL FLAVOR ... The ASU men’s golf program has a history of excelling with a combination of American and international standouts and this season is certainly no exception ... Of the Jaguars’ 11-man roster, six players hail from outside the U.S. ... ASU has two Swedes (Olle Bengtsson and Henrik Norlander, a Finn (Janne Kaske), a Brit (Jake Amos), an Aussie (Mitch Krywulycz) and a Canadian (Mike Keast) ... ASU’s NCAA Championship lineup consists of a Georgian (Keith Guest), a New York native (Tarik Can), a Swede (Norlander), a Brit (Amos) and an Aussie (Krywulycz) ... In fact, of the 11 Jaguars on the roster, only three are from the state of Georgia.
NORLANDER A NEAR MISS FOR PALMER CUP ... ASU freshman Henrik Norlander just missed earning a selection to the 2008 European Palmer Cup squad ... In 2005, ASU seniors Kalle Edberg and Scott Jamieson were selected to compete for Team Europe ... The annual Ryder Cup-style matches between American collegiate golfers and their European counterparts will be played June 26-27 at Glasgo Golf Club’s Gailes Links in Glasgow, Scotland ... The U.S. leads the series, 6-4-1, after winning the 2007 competition, 18-6, at Caves Valley Golf Club in Maryland ... The U.S. lost, 19.5-4.5, in 2006, the last time the competition was held in Europe ... Edberg and Jamieson became the fourth and fifth players to represent Augusta State in international competition. Previously, Robert Duck (England), Jamie Elson (England) and Oliver Wilson (England) played for either Europe and/or Great Britain/Ireland in the Palmer Cup or Walker Cup.
JAGS LAND IN-STATE TALENT ... ASU men’s golf coach Josh Gregory announced on Nov. 26, 2007 the signing of Taylor Floyd to a national letter-of-intent ... Floyd will join the Jaguar men’s golf program for the Fall, 2008 semester ... The fifth-ranked player in the state of Georgia, Floyd is a senior at First Presbyterian Day School in Macon, Ga. ... He earned medalist honors in the summer of 2007 at the Georgia State Amateur qualifier in Cordele, Ga., firing a 66 at Georgia Vets Memorial Golf Club ... Floyd was the GISA Region 2-AAA medalist with a 68 and tied for third in the 2007 Georgia State Junior Championship at the University of Georgia Golf Course in Athens ... He finished fifth in the 2007 Future Masters and was a member of the 2007 Georgia squad that competed in the Georgia/South Carolina Junior Team Challenge Cup matches ... The 2006 SGJT Jekyll Island Classic champion, Floyd also won the Healy Point Country Club men’s club championship and tied for ninth in the AJGA Ringgold Classic.
GREGORY’S GOT GAME ... ASU men’s golf coach Josh Gregory, the reigning Regions Cup (a series of summer amateur events in the CSRA) champion in the metro-Augusta area, advanced to the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying on Monday, May 13 when he carded an even-par 71 at Long Cove Club in Hilton Head Island, S.C., during U.S. Open Local Qualifying ... Gregory, who is wrapping up his sixth season as Director of Golf and head coach of the Jaguar men’s program, claimed one of eight available spots from a field of 114 participants ... He will compete in the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying on Monday, June 2 at Colonial Country Club in his hometown of Memphis, Tenn. ... He is scheduled to be paired with Will MacKenzie and Dan Forsman in the 36-hole qualifier … For more information, visit www.usopen.com.