Cougars in fifth at rain-soaked Ashworth Invitational

Nick Becker is tied for 14th at the rain-soak Ashworth Invitational

LOS -- BYU's fifth-ranked golf team is in fifth-place at the Ashworth Invitational after a rain-suspended one-and-a-half rounds at the soggy North Ranch Country Club on Monday.

BYU, just two days away from a second-place finish at the John Burns Intercollegiate in Hawaii, started slow against a challenging field on a challenging course in challenging conditions. As heavy rains soaked the greens, play was suspended at 4 p.m. PST with the Cougars needed six more holes to finish the second round. BYU (+9) trails tournament leader Washington (+1) by eight strokes after the first day.

"We really started poorly today, but to their credit, our guys fought their way back and played their way through some tough holes," BYU head coach Bruce Brockbank said. "I was really pleased and impressed with the way these guys turned it around, because it could have gotten ugly for us."

Clay Ogden did his part to keep the Cougars within striking distance. Through 30 holes Ogden is two-under-par thanks to a pair of eagles (hole No. 15 par 5 in round one and hole No. 12 in round two). The 2005 USGA Publinks Champion is tied for second place and just one stroke off the lead.

Nick Becker also played strong in the cold and rainy conditions. He went even par in the opening round and is currently tied for 14th place at two-over-par.

"I kind of like the rain, because I grew up playing in it a lot," said Becker, a native of Boise, Idaho. "This course is more challenging than Hawaii because it forces you to be more precise. You can't just crush your driver off the tee every time. You've got to hit a two or three iron off the tee and then be careful to hit your approaches below the pin."

Daniel Summerhays, who at one point during the first round was five-over, made a strong comeback and finished just two-over-par. He is tied for 31st place at five-over through 30 holes. BYU's All-Americans Oscar Alvarez and Jake Ellison both struggled in the cold, wet conditions and are tied for 42nd place at seven-over-par.

With more rain in the forecast for Tuesday, the tournament is in jeopardy of being cancelled. The Cougars will tee off at 7 a.m. with the hopes of finishing the final six holes of the second round. After all the teams have completed 36 holes, tournament officials will determine whether the final 18 can be played. If teams cannot complete 36 holes, the tournament will be cancelled.

Results and live scoring can be viewed at

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