Arizona Makes its 15th Consecutive NCAA Championship Appearance
NCAA Championship Time: After winning the NCAA West Regional last week, the 10th ranked University of Arizona men's golf team makes its 15th consecutive appearance in the NCAA Golf Championships, May 31 - June 3, in Opelika, Ala. The event will be hosted by Auburn University and takes place at the Grand National Golf Club (Par-72, 6,961 yards). This four-day event will consist of 30 teams and six individuals (156 golfers) from around the country. Following Thursday's second round, the field will be cut to the top-15 teams and nine individuals for the final two rounds. The 2000 NCAA team and individual champions will be crowned on May 27.
Tourney Teams: The NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championship 30-team field features 10 teams from the West Regional that Arizona won, along with nine from the Central Regional and 11 from the East Regional. There are five teams from the Pac-10 Conference involved... The championship field includes top-ranked Clemson, #2 Georgia Tech,, #3 Oklahoma State, #4, Arizona State, #5 BYU, #6 Georgia, #7 Houston, #8 Northwestern, #9 Fresno State, #10 Arizona, #11 UNLV, #12 North Florida, #13 New Mexico, #14 Texas, #15 Auburn, #18 Washington, #19 Kent, #24 Georgia State, #25 Kansas, #27 Virginia, #29 Mississippi State, #31 TCU, #32 Southern California, #33 Oklahoma, #34 Minnesota, #35 Wake Forest, #36 California, #39 East Tennessee State, #40 Pepperdine and #41 North Carolina. The defending team champion is Georgia, while last year's individual champion, Luke Donald of Northwestern, is back to defend his title as well.
Arizona's Lineup: The Wildcats will bring the following golfers to the NCAA Championships:
Yr. 99-00 Avg. Top-10/Top-20 Fin. (Tourn's)
Ricky Barnes Fr. 71.28 5/3 (13)
Derek Gillespie Sr. 71.63 7/2 (13)
Cody Beyer So. 72.94 2/4 (12)
Scott Moore Sr. 73.91 1/2(11)
Reid Hatley Fr. 74.29 1/1 (11)
Tee Times: Following practice rounds on both Monday and Tuesday, Arizona will open first round NCAA play on Wednesday at 1:12 p.m. CDT (10:12 a.m. - Tucson time) from the No. 10 tee. The Wildcats will be paired with Northwestern and Houston and are in the afternoon's final grouping to begin play on the back nine. The final tee time for the group is at 1:48 p.m. On Thursday, the Wildcats are again paired with Northwestern and Houston and begin play at 8:15 a.m. from the first tee.
After the field is cut to the top 15 teams following the second round, third and final round action begins each morning at 7:30 a.m. from both the No. 1 and No. 10 tees.
The Format: The four-day, 72-hole event will see teams comprised of five golfers, with the top-four scores in each round counting towards the team's total. There will be 18 holes of play each day.
1 Men's Golf Schedule
Date Event Place
Sept. 11-12 The Ridges Intercollegiate 2nd
Oct. 1-2 W.H. Tucker Intercollg. 8th
Oct. 11-12 Red River Classic 15th
Oct. 18-19 Jerry Pate Intercollegiate 7th
Oct. 29-31 Stanford Invitational T6th
Jan. 31-Feb. 1 Ping Arizona Intercollegiate T2nd
Feb. 23-25 John Burns Intercoll. T2nd
Mar. 8-9 Louisiana Classic 1st
Mar. 20-21 Morris Williams Intercoll. 7th
Apr. 7-9 U.S. Collegiate Champs. 7th
Apr. 15-16 ASU Thunderbird Invit. 2nd
Apr. 24-26 Pac-10 Championships 5th
May 18-20 NCAA West Regional 1st
May 31-June 3 NCAA Championships
MasterCard Collegiate Rankings
Arizona - No. 10
Derek Gillespie - No. 17
Ricky Barnes - No. 22
Reid Hatley - No. 75
Cody Beyer - No. 94
The UA's Last Action: Arizona won the NCAA West Regional Men's Golf Championship at the Riverbend Golf Course on May 20. Capturing their first NCAA West Regional title since 1993, the Wildcats finished with a three-round total of 25-under-par 839 and won the championship by four strokes over UNLV and Brigham Young. The UA entered the final round in second place and trailed BYU by one shot, but fired a 281 in the final round to win the title, which was its second overall tournament win of the year. Following the top-three were USC, who placed fourth at 848, New Mexico (850) and Fresno State and Arizona State, which tied for sixth at 851.
The individual championship was won by Pepperdine's Michael Beard. He won with a three-round total of 12-under-par 204. Arizona's top finisher was freshman Reid Hatley, who finished in a four-way tie for fifth at 6-under-par 210. Hatley shot a 69 in the final round to move from a tie for 18th into a tie for fifth. Derek Gillespie entered the final day in a tie for first, but finished with a 2-over-par 74 and dropped into a nine-way tie for ninth at 5-under 211. Also included in that group who tied for ninth at 211 was Arizona sophomore Cody Beyer. Ricky Barnes finished in a six-way tie for 18th at 4-under-par 212. The final member of the first place Arizona lineup was Scott Moore, who tied for 60th at 3-over 219.
Arizona's NCAA Championship History: Arizona has won the NCAA title once, back in 1992 at the Championship Golf Course in Albuquerque... Included on that team was current PGA star Jim Furyk, as well as David Berganio, Manny Zerman, Harry Rudolph and Rob McIver... Rudolph finished second at 10-under-par 278... Besides that championship, Arizona's next best finish at the NCAA Championships was a third place performance in 1990... Arizona placed fifth in 1996 and had a pair of sixth place finishes in 1989 and 1990.
The following is a breakdown of Arizona's finishes at the NCAA Men's Golf Championships:
1941 18th 1991 18th
1960 7th 1992 1st
1961 7th 1993 16th
1963 25th 1994 14th
1986 18th 1995 10th
1987 18th 1996 5th
1988 6th 1997 23rd
1989 6th 1998 30th
1990 3rd 1999 20th
All-Pac-10 Honors: Arizona's Ricky Barnes was named the Pac-10 Conference Men's Golf Freshman of the Year on May 5. He was also named to the All-Pac-10 Conference first team. Senior Derek Gillespie joined Barnes on the All-Pac-10 first team as well. It was the second time in Gillespie's career that he was an all-conference first team selection, with the last coming during his sophomore season (1998). He was named to the All-Pac-10 second team in 1997 and 1999. Sophomore Cody Beyer was named to the All-Pac-10 honorable mention team.
Last Year's NCAA Championships: Although Arizona played in the 1999 NCAA Championships, it did not make the cut for the final two rounds. After the first two days, the UA had a 39-over-par 615 total (303-312), which tied it for 20th with South Carolina -- and were seven shots off the cutline. However, Derek Gillespie had a great individual showing by tying for sixth. Another Wildcat, Scott Moore, also made the cut and would finish in a tie for 51st.
Gillespie had a four-day total of 6-over-par 294 and was 10 shots off the lead, tying him with North Carolina's Max Harris. Moore tied for 51st with five other golfers at 17-over-par 305 after closing the tournament with a 78 this afternoon. The tournament, which was held at the Hazeltine National Golf Club (Par-72, 7,196 yards) in Chaska, Minn., was won by Georgia, who had a four-day total of 1180. The Bulldogs won the national championship by three shots over Oklahoma State (1183). Northwestern was third at 1189, while Washington placed fourth at 1189. Arizona State rounded out the top-five at 1192 and defending national champion UNLV was sixth (1195). Individually, Northwestern's Luke Donald won medalist honors after carding a 4-over-par 284. One of just three golfers to shoot under-par, he won the title by three shots over Georgia's Ryuji Kelly and Washington s Troy Kelly, who each had a 1-under-par 287. Arizona State's Paul Casey was fourth at 2-over-par 290. Gillespie's sixth place finish was the best showing for a Wildcat at the NCAAs since Rory Sabbatini finished second to Tiger Woods at the 1996 NCAA Championships.
Wildcat Notes: Arizona will go into the NCAA Championships with a string of 10 consecutive finishes in the top-seven... After not winning a tournament in either of the past two seasons, the Cats won two this year the NCAA West Regional and the Louisiana Classic... The NCAA West Regional championship was the program's first West Regional title since 1993... That team went on to place 16th at the NCAA Championships... Overall, Arizona has now won five West Regional titles (2000, 1993, 1992, 1991, 1989)... Arizona's last top-10 finish at the NCAA Tournament was a fifth place showing in 1996... Both of the University of Arizona's men's and women's golf programs won their respective NCAA West Regional this season... The women's team has been ranked No. 1 for the past 11 weeks and has won its past seven consecutive tournaments... The UA's latest ranking of eighth in the MasterCard Collegiate Golf Rankings (May 10) is the team's highest since it was No.1 towards the end of the 1997-98 season... When the UA won the Louisiana Classic back on March 9, it was the first tournament championship for the Wildcats since October of 1997... That season, current PGA golfer Rory Sabbatini led the UA to the title at the Taylor Made Red River Classic... In the spring portion of Arizona's 1999-00 schedule, the UA has won two tournaments and finished second three times... Senior Derek Gillespie has the most top-10 finishes of any Wildcat golfer this season (7), followed by Ricky Barnes with five... Gillespie enters the NCAA Championships with a string of three consecutive top-10 outings... He tied for ninth at the NCAA West Regional, tied for seventh at the Pac-10 Championship and finished alone in second place at the ASU Thunderbird/Savane... Freshman Reid Hatley's tie for fifth at the West Regional was his best outing of the season... He was also the team's top finisher at the U.S. Collegiate Championships at Los Cabos, Mexico (April 7).
Arizona's Coaching Staff: Arizona's director of golf, Rick LaRose, is in his 22nd season at the helm of the program and is assisted by John Knauer, who is in his second year at the UA... LaRose is the only coach in NCAA golf history to coach both a men's and the women's golf team to a national championship, leading the UA men's team to one in 1992 and women's golf program to the 1996 title... He has also guided both programs to seven NCAA Regional championships (five men's and two women's) and four Pac-10 titles (two men's, two women's), while winning 42 men's tourneys and 17 women's tournament titles... He has been the head coach of the UA men's golf program since 1979 and was the women's head coach from 1995-98.
NCAA Experience for this Year's Lineup: Derek Gillespie has played in two NCAA Championships... Last season as a junior, he tied for sixth (6-over 294)... As a sophomore in 1998, he was a part of a Wildcat team that did not make the cut... He shot a 3-over 149 through the first two rounds... Scott Moore tied for 51st last season as a junior (17-over 305)... Cody Beyer played last year as a freshman on a team that didn't make the cut... He shot a 21-over 165 in the first two rounds... Obviously, this will be the first NCAA Championship experience for freshmen Ricky Barnes and Reid Hatley.
A Look Back at the Fall: Arizona posted four top-10 finishes in five fall tournaments... The Cats placed second at their first tournament of the season, The Ridges Intercollegiate, behind the play of freshman Patrick Norris, who placed second individually at 3-under-par 213... Arizona followed that with an eighth-place finish at the W.H. Tucker Intercollegiate led by senior Derek Gillespie, who tied for fifth individually at 1-under-par 215... Gillespie also tied with freshman Ricky Barnes for the team's top score at the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate. They tied for 18th at 2-over-par 215, while the team was 7th in the final standings... Gillespie's fourth-place outing at the Nelson Invitational guided the Cats to their sixth-place effort in that tournament... Gillespie also participated in the Savane College All-America Golf Classic in November. He fired a 67 in the final round to finish tied for fifth at 3-under-par 210 in a tournament that featured two dozen of the top collegiate men's golfers.
The Talented Mr. Gillespie: Senior Derek Gillespie is the team's top ranked golfer at No. 17... He is coming off a tie for ninth at the NCAA West Regional... Prior to that, he finished seventh at the Pac-10 Championships... His best performance of the season was a second place finish at the ASU Thunderbird/Savane Invitational in Tempe on April 16... He finished one shot behind the winner after carding a 8-under-par 208 (69-71-68)... He has seven top-10 finishes and two top-20 performances in his 13 tournaments in 1... Besides the last three tournaments, his other top-10 finishes are a pair of top-five outings (tied for 4th at Nelson and tied for 5th at Savane)... He owns the team's second-lowest scoring average at 71.63 and has been Arizona's top finisher in five out of 13 tournaments on the season... He tied for 24th at the U.S. Collegiate Championships... He tied for seventh at the John Burns Intercollegiate after firing his lowest round of the season (66) on the final day to jump from 31st place... He was an All-America selection in 1999 after tying for sixth at the NCAA Championships... He shot a 6-over-par 294 (72-71-76-75) and was in second place after two rounds just two shots off the lead... He entered the NCAAs not ranked among the nation's top-100, but finished the season as the country's No. 45 golfer in the final MasterCard rankings... He was named to the 1999 All-Pac-10 second team after he tied for 20th at the Pac-10 Championships with a 10-over-par 290 (76-73-67-74)... Gillespie played in 12 tournaments in 1998-99 and had five top-20 finishes and two top-10 outings.
Barnes the Noble: Ricky Barnes (Stockton, Calif.) is proving to be one of the top freshmen golfers in the country this season and was named the Pac-10 Conference Freshman of the Year on May 5... Currently ranked No. 22 in the nation, he has lived up to expectations, winning two tournaments and having five top-10 finishes and three top-20 outings in 13 tournaments... Barnes, the brother of former UA golfer Andy Barnes, won the Ping/Arizona Intercollegiate in February with a 9-under-par 204 (65-68-71) and the Louisiana Classic on March 14 with a 3-under-par 213... He currently boasts the team's top scoring average at 71.28 and was the team's best finisher at the Pac-10 Championships, tying for third... His other win -- at the Ping/Arizona Intercollegiate on Feb. 1 marked the first UA golfer to win a tournament since Rory Sabbatini won the 1997 Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate... He was third at the ASU Thunderbird/Savane Invitational in Tempe, shooting a 6-under-par 210 (71-70-69)... Barnes was featured in Sports Illustrated's Golf Plus issue in the Faces in the Crowd section in February... He has been Arizona's top golfer in four tournaments this season, with his lowest finish coming at the Ridges Intercollegiate where he finished tied for 38th... He came to Arizona ranked 17th in the country for the class of 1999 and 42nd overall... He had four runner-up finishes in his AJGA career, including three in a row toward the end of 1999.
Fresh Faces: In addition to Ricky Barnes, UA director of golf Rick LaRose has gathered one of the best recruiting classes in the nation in Reid Hatley (Spokane, Wash.), Patrick Norris (Orlando, Fla.) and John Wine (College Station, Texas)... The freshman foursome has combined to record seven top-10 finishes and four top-20 finishes... Hatley was the team's top golfer at the NCAA West Regional, tying for fifth, and the U.S. Collegiate Championships, placing 12th... He shot a season-best 68 both tournaments and his 210 at the West Regional was his best total of the season... Norris posted a second-place finish in his first collegiate competition at The Ridges Intercollegiate... Hatley tied for ninth at the Spalding/Anteater Invitational, when he played for the UA junior varsity team... He was ranked 10th among American Junior Golfers Association class of 1999 players at the end of the season and was the No. 18 player in the country overall... He won the 1999 AJGA Compaq Junior Championship at Trophy Lake and had five top-10 performances during his AJGA career... Hatley tied for 23rd at the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate in the fall.
Did You Know: A lot has been made over the years about the success of the Arizona basketball program and its 16 straight appearances in the NCAA Basketball Tournament... Well, the Arizona men's golf team is on Lute Olson's hoopsters heels with 15 consecutive NCAA showings... Also, with the UA men's golf team advancing to the NCAA Championships this year, 15 of the 19 sports at the University of Arizona qualified for NCAA postseason play in 1.
Arizona Golf History: In five of the past 10 seasons, Arizona has produced a first team All-America golfer... There have been two National Players of the Year from the UA -- Eric Meeks (1989) and Robert Gamez (1990)... Those two were also the National Amateur of the Year (Meeks in 1988; Gamez in 1989)... The Wildcats won the 1992 NCAA national championship... UA has also won two Pac-10 titles and has been the league runner-up on six occasions... In six of the past 11 years, Arizona has spent time ranked as the nation's No. 1 team, including the 1997-98 team, which spent most of the year in the top spot... Arizona alums on the PGA Tour include such names as Jim Furyk, Robert Gamez, Don Pooley, Rory Sabbatini, Mike Springer, Larry Silveira, Ted Purdy and Dan Pohl... There have been four Arizona golfers named (five overall selections) to the United States Walker Cup team - Berganio was a two time performer... Since Rick LaRose took over as head coach in 1979, there have been 32 All-America first team, second team, third team or honorable mention golfers from the UA.
Arizona Player Bios for 1999-00
Derek Gillespie, 5-8, 170, Sr., Oshawa, Ontario: Team's top ranked golfer at No. 17... All-Pac-10 first team selection... Team best seven top-10 finishes... Two top-20 performances in his 13 tournaments this year... He owns the team's second-lowest scoring average at 71.63 and has been Arizona's top finisher in five out of 13 tournaments on the season... Tied for ninth at the NCAA West Regionals... Entered the final day in a tie for first, but shot a 74 and fell to ninth... Tied for seventh at the Pac-10 Championships with a four round total of 8-under-par 280... Had his best score in the final round - a 68 - to help move him up from 13th... The tie for seventh was the best finish during his career at the Pac-10s... Finished second at the ASU Thunderbird/Savane Invitational in Tempe one shot behind the winner after carding a 8-under-par 208 (69-71-68)... Other top-10 finishes are a pair of top-five outings (tied for 4th at Nelson and tied for 5th at Savane)... Tied for 24th at the U.S. Collegiate Championships... Tied for seventh at the John Burns Intercollegiate after firing his lowest round of the season (66) on the final day to jump from 31st place... He was an All-America selection in 1999 after tying for sixth at the NCAA Championships... He shot a 6-over-par 294 (72-71-76-75) and was in second place after two rounds just two shots off the lead... Was named to the 1999 All-Pac-10 second team after he tied for 20th at the Pac-10 Championships with a 10-over-par 290 (76-73-67-74).
Ricky Barnes, 6-1, 200, Fr., Stockton, Calif.:Pac-10 Freshman of the Year and All-Pac-10 first team performer... One of the top freshmen in the country, he has won two tournaments this season and is ranked No. 22... Leads the team in stroke average (71.28)... Has five top-10 finishes and three top-20 outings... Has finished in the top-five in four of his last seven tournaments... Tied for 18th at the NCAA West Regional (4-under 212)... Had back-to-back top-five performances going into that event... Placed third at the Pac-10 Championships with a 10-under-par 278... That was the best finish for an Arizona golfer at the Pac-10 Championships since 1994... Prior to that, had a third place finish at the ASU Thunderbird/Savane Invitational (6-under/210)... The brother of former UA golfer Andy Barnes, he won the Ping/Arizona Intercollegiate in February with a 9-under-par 204 (65-68-71) and the Louisiana Classic on March 14 with a 3-under-par 213... With his win at the Ping/Arizona Intercollegiate on Feb. 1, he became the first UA golfer to win a tournament since Rory Sabbatini won the 1997 Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate... He has been Arizona's top golfer in four tournaments this season, with his lowest finish coming at the Ridges Intercollegiate where he finished tied for 38th... He came to Arizona ranked 17th in the country for the class of 1999 and 42nd overall... He had four runner-up finishes in his AJGA career, including three in a row toward the end of 1999.
Cody Beyer, 5-8, 150, So., Tucson, Ariz.: Honorable mention All-Pac-10 team selection... Ranked No. 94 this week... Owns the third-best stroke average on the team (72.94)... Has played in 12 tournaments and has two top-10 performances... Best outing of the season was at the NCAA West Regional, helping lead the Wildcats to the title... He tied for ninth after shooting a 5-under-211 (70-69-72)... His other top-10 was at the Morris Williams Intercollegiate... He tied for seventh with a 4-over-par 220 and was the team's top finisher... He has four top-20 finishes this season... Tied for 30th at the Pac-10 Championships (3-over 291)... Tied for 15th at the Louisiana Classic (222), tied for 16th at the John Burns Intercollegiate (212), tied for 18th at the Ping/Arizona Intercollegiate 217) and tied for 16th at the Ridges Intercollegiate (221)... Last season as a freshman, he tied for 33rd at the Pac-10 Championships after shooting a 15-over-par 295... He was the 5A Golfer of the Year in 1996 for Canyon del Oro High School in Tucson.
Scott Moore, 5-9,165, Jr., Collinsville, Ill.: One of two seniors on the NCAA squad, he has played in 11 tournaments and has a stroke average of 73.91... Tied for 51st at the Pac-10 Championships (14-over 302) and tied for 60th at the West Regional... Best tournament of this season was a tie for eighth at the ASU Thunderbird/Savane Invitational... Shot a 4-under-par 212 and had a season-best 68 in the final round, helping give Arizona three golfers in the top-10...Tied for 12th at the Ping/Arizona Intercollegiate (216) and tied for 15th at the Louisiana Classic (222)... Tied for 51st at last year's NCAA Championships.
Reid Hatley, 5-10, 150, Fr., Spokane, Wash.: Ranked No. 75 in the country this week... The second of two freshmen in the Arizona top-five, he has played in 11 tournaments this season... His top finish of the year was a team-best tie for fifth at the NCAA West Regional (6-under 210)... Had a 12th place outing at the U.S. Collegiate Championships in Cabo, Mexico... He carded a 3-under-par 213 and was the top Arizona finisher in the tournament... One top-10 outing and one-20 performance... Tied for 45th at the Pac-10 Championships (8-over 296)... Has a stroke average of 74.29... Tied for 23rd at the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate back in the Fall portion of the schedule... Shot a 3-over-par 216.