May 17, 2012
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ATHENS, GA. – – Senior Barrett Kelpin and freshman Ian Vandersee each shot even par 71 to lead the University of Iowa men’s golf team in the first round of the NCAA Southeast Regional Thursday. The Hawkeyes are in 11th place following first round action at the University of Georgia Golf Course with a score of 288 (+4).
The regional will continue with 18 holes of play Friday and conclude with the final 18 holes Saturday. The top five teams advance to the NCAA Championships. Alabama leads the regional with a first round score of 269 (-15), followed by North Florida (271), East Carolina (276) and Georgia and Houston (282).
Kelpin and Vandersee are tied for 26th place in the individual standings. Senior Chris Brant and freshman Joseph Winslow each shot two over par, while sophomore Steven Ihm followed with a three-over round of 74.
Fans can follow the Hawkeyes in NCAA Regional play online at golfstat.com.
“As a team we were still adapting to the course out there today,” said Iowa coach Mark Hankins. “Everyone just hovered around even par, one or two over, and that’s where we finished. There were some good scores with light winds and warm temps and we didn’t have anybody under par. We will take today’s experience and use it tomorrow, adjust to the golf course and be determined throughout the round.”
Kelpin got off to a fast start with birdies on two of his first three holes. After struggling in the middle of his round with four bogies, he closed with two additional birdies in his last four holes to get back to even par. He made a 20-foot birdie putt on his second hole and converted short putts for his other three birdies.
“I got off to a good start,” said Kelpin. “I was two under through three holes. I had a rough patch in the middle with four bogies, but I finished with birdies on my 15th and 16th holes. I struggled with my driver during the middle of my round, which you can’t do if you want to score well on this course. I’m glad I was able to get back to level par at least.”
Vandersee posted a consistent round, with 14 pars, two bogies and two birdies. He had two bogies on his front nine before closing the day with birdies on his final two holes, a par three and a par four.
“It was a solid ball striking day off the tee,” said Vandersee. “For the first half of the round I struggled to hit my irons in decent range to make birdies. I got it dialed in as the round went along and had some good birdie opportunities on the back nine. I birdied my last two holes of the day to get back to even par. There is room for improvement and I definitely think we have the ability to shoot some low numbers out here.”
“Even par is a solid round out there today,” said Hankins, on the play of Kelpin and Vandersee. “We were a little competitively rusty, so it’s just a matter of relaxing enough to hit some good shots and putts the right speed to go in. We are going to continue to adjust today and come out tomorrow to continue our progress.”
Brant was even through nine holes, with one birdie and a bogie. He had a chip-in birdie on the back nine along with three bogies. Winslow was two over par on his front nine and shot even on the back. He recorded an eagle on the par five seventh hole with a chip shot from a bunker. Ihm was two over on the front and one over on his back nine.
“We didn’t get off to the start we would have liked,” added Kelpin, who along with Brant is playing in his fourth straight NCAA regional. “I think everyone feels OK, we can all shoot better numbers here and it’s only one round of three. We have to keep pushing forward and come out tomorrow with a positive attitude. It’s a very fair course. If you hit it somewhat straight and hit a few greens you are going to have some good looks at birdie. The greens are rolling so pure, if you put a good roll on the ball it’s going to go in. I feel really good about the course and feel we can have some success out here tomorrow and Saturday.”
The Hawkeyes will tee off in round two beginning at 7:50 a.m. CT Friday.
Following are the team standings and individual leaders through round one:
Team Result (Par 71)
1. Alabama 269 (-15)
2. North Florida 271 (-13)
3. East Carolina 276 (-8)
4. Georgia 280 (-4)
5. Houston 282 (-2)
UNCW 282 (-2)
7. Augusta State 283 (-1)
8. Wake Forest 284 (E)
9. New Mexico 285 (+1)
Texas-Arlington 285 (+1)
11. Iowa 288 (+4)
12. Long Beach State 297 (+13)
13. Loyola-MD 301 (+17)
Individual Results (Top 3 + Iowa)
1. Kevin Aylwin (N. Florida) 65 (-6)
2. MJ Maguire (N. Florida) 66 (-5)
Curtis Reed (Houston) 66 (-5)
Bobby Wyatt (Alabama) 66 (-5)
T26. Barrett Kelpin (Iowa) 71 (E)
Ian Vandersee (Iowa) 71 (E)
T43. Chris Brant (Iowa) 73 (+2)
Joseph Winslow (Iowa) 73 (+2)
T52. Steven Ihm (Iowa) 74 (+3)