ETSU Earns Trip to NCAA Championship

Saturday, May 20, 2006

TUCSON, Ariz. – For the 15th time in the program’s history and the first time since 2001, the ETSU men’s golf team is headed to the NCAA Championships.

The Buccaneers fired a final round 3-under-par 285 to finish eighth on the team leaderboard Saturday in the NCAA West Regional at the Omni Tucson National Golf Course. ETSU ended the event at 15-under 849 – and with a finish in the Top 10 – earn a berth in the NCAA Championships scheduled for May 31-June 3 in Sunriver, Ore. Arizona and Florida tied for the team title at 37-under.

Familiar faces led the Bucs’ charge to the national championship tournament, with junior Rhys Davies (Bridgend, Wales) guiding the way thanks to a pair of sub-70 rounds and a third place finish at 12-under (70-66-68=204). Meanwhile, sophomore Gareth Shaw (Lisburn, Northern Ireland) also enjoyed a pair of sub-70 rounds and finished tied for 11th at 8-under (69-67-72=208). Florida’s Billy Horschel and Nevada’s Casey Watabu shared the individual title at 13-under.

“We’ve worked hard this year and we’ve had a lot of ups and down, but this has always been our goal and we got it done,” said Davies, who has spent the entire season ranked in the Top 5 nationally. “It’s particularly pleasing for us to do it here (in Arizona). The golf is a lot different than back home in Europe or in Tennessee. It’s extremely hot, but the course was in fantastic condition and that meant a lot of low scores. We’re not really used to that type of golf, but we came away with some birdies and some low scores.”