May 26, 2009
NCAA Championships Tuesday Photo Gallery
Day One Results (Via Golfstat.com)
Day One Results (PDF Format)
TOLEDO, Ohio -- Junior Jonathan Bowers (Columbus, Ohio/Bishop Watterson) is tied for the lead at the 2009 NCAA National Championships after firing a 2-under 69 Tuesday at the Inverness Club. Bowers' effort helped Northwestern to a tie for 12th in the 30-team field after 18 holes.
Bowers went under par on the second hole of the course before giving it back with a bogey on the fourth. He then stuck his approach on the 450-yard par-4 fifth to within 10 feet, sending the putt home for a birdie. Bowers then made back-to-back birds on Nos. 12 and 13, stuffing a seven-iron a foot away on the par-3 12th before rolling in a 15-footer on the par-4 13th. He lost a stroke with a bogey on 16 but still broke 70 with his first-round 2-under 69.
Bowers is tied with No. 4 Matt Hill of N.C. State, who is competing as an individual in the tournament, and No. 24 Scott Langley of Illinois. The trio leads by a stroke over a quintet tied at 1-under par.
"I did not know what to expect coming into today," Bowers said. "I've been working on some things with my swing coach and with coach Goss, who is a Golf Magazine top-100 teacher. My coaches told me they thought I would play well today."
The first groups off Tuesday began in a light drizzle before finishing their first nine holes in a steady rain. The morning showers gave way to calmer weather in the afternoon despite the threat of thunderstorms in the forecast.
Northwestern as a team shot a 14-over 298, good for its 12th place tie with No. 10 Alabama and No. 12 Texas A&M. NU is one stroke behind No. 9 Arkansas and No. 42 Duke, which are tied for 10th, and two strokes behind No. 45 Michigan in ninth. There is a three-way tie for sixth at 10-over par.
The top eight teams after 54 holes advance to match play to determine the team national champion. The individual medalist will be crowned at the conclusion of Thursday's final stroke play round.
Freshman Eric Chun (Ansung City, South Korea/International Christian School) had a tough start to his Tuesday, battling through the wet conditions to a 5-over 40 on the front nine after making a bogey and two doubles. Chun turned it on during his back side, shooting 1-under with a pair of birdies. He made a three on the par-4 11th before a bogey on No. 16. On the 354-yard 18th, Chun bombed his drive through the fairway to the fringe in front of a heavily bunkered green. He pitched to 15 feet and hit a soft right-to-left breaking putt to conclude his day with a birdie and a 4-over 75.
Josh Dupont (Poway, Calif./Poway) played a very steady round with only a pair of double bogies (on the par-3 3rd and the par-4 14th) leading to a 4-over 75 on the day. Dupont fashioned 14 pars and also made bogey on the eighth hole, but turned right around and drilled an uphill put on the 468-yard par-4 ninth for a birdie. Dupont and Chun both are in 56th place in the individual standings after 18 holes.
As the constant drizzle turned into more of a driving rain during the morning hours, David Lipsky (La Canada, Calif./La Canada) entered the ninth hole needing something special to turn his round around after playing the first seven holes in 8-over par. The junior's second shot on the ninth found the shaggy rough right of the green, but a tremendous flop shot onto the green slowly curved its way into the cup for a chip-in birdie that helped kick start an even-par finish to the round over his final 11 holes. Lipsky's first-day score was an 8-over 79, placing him 127th in the field.
Freshman Sam Chien (San Diego, Calif./Mt. Carmel), playing in his first team tournament of the season after performing well enough to earn a spot in the lineup, scrambled his way to a 10-over 81. Chien played well out of trouble all day, making par on seven-straight holes from Nos. 7-13 at one point during his round.
"It was a great round Jonathan played," head coach Pat Goss said. "To shoot 2-under on the first day is a great score and really held our team round together. We were able to survive today with Eric Chun and David Lipsky not playing their best and that means we are alright. It was an overall solid first round but we need to play better tomorrow."
Northwestern tees it up from 11:59 a.m. -- 12:37 p.m. CT in Wednesday's second round at the Inverness Club.