Tough Conditions Too Much For Cougars

BYU hopes to smooth out its game before hosting Cougar Classic

TEMPE -- The 8th-ranked BYU men's golf team had another rough outing on the golf course Saturday, finishing in sixth place at the ASU Thunderbird Invitational, while 2nd-ranked UNLV took home its first-ever Thunderbird Championship.

The 14-team field faced difficult windy conditions that made it tough for each team to shoot low in the tournament. BYU shot a 22-over-par 874 while UNLV finished with a 7-over-par 859, the highest score of a Thunderbird Champion since UCLA shot 13 over par in 1998.

"Bottom line we just weren't playing well," said head coach Bruce Brockbank. "It was really windy and there were a couple of tough holes that can get you into trouble if you hit them wrong. We didn't capitalize on our good shots and we just made a lot of silly choices."

Junior Oscar Alvarez, currently ranked No. 31 nationally (Golfweek), led the Cougars in throughout the two-day event, shooting a 1-over-par 72 in the final round and finishing the tournament in 11th place with a 2-over-par 215.

Senior Greg Machtaler, currently ranked No. 16, also provided the Cougars with some power. Machtaler began the final round at even par but made some costly mistakes in the final round, dropping four strokes (75) to finish the tournament in 18th place with a 4-over-par 217.

Sophomore Nick Becker played well in his fifth tournament this season, finishing in 26th place with a 6-over-par 219. Becker played well in the opening two rounds as he shot 71 and 72, but dropped five strokes (76) in the final round.

Sophomore Jake Ellison rounded off the Cougars' team score with a 10-over-par 223, while Senior Ron Harvey, Jr. finished the tournament with a 13-over-par 226. Competing as an individual, senior Todd Miller finished the tournament 14 over par (227).

The Cougars return home to Provo and look to iron out some rough spots in their individual performances before hosting the PING Cougar Classic April 22-23.

"We need to figure out how to bounce back so we can be ready for our tournament at home," Brockbank said. "We need to improve on hitting into the wind and our course management."

ASU Karsten Golf Course -- Par 71 -- 7,025 yards


1. UNLV 274-289-296--859 (+7)

2. Pepperdine 285-284-292--861 (+9)

3. Arizona St. 286-287-296--869 (+17)

4. Arizona 282-292-297--871 (+19)

5. UCLA 290-289-294--873 (+21)

6. BYU 282-293-299--874 (+22)

T7. Colorado St. 285-289-302--876 (+24)

T7. Oregon 295-286-295--876 (+24)

9. Texas Tech 288-289-301--878 (+26)

10. Penn St. 297-287-306--890 (+38)

11. Stanford 292-298-302--892 (+40)

12. Kansas St. 300-295-302--897 (+45)

13. Hawaii 301-295-305--901 (+49)

14. California 297-296-309--902 (+50)


T11. Oscar Alvarez 68-75-72--215 (+2)

T18. Greg Machtaler 71-71-75--217 (+4)

26. Nick Becker 71-72-76--219 (+6)

T37. Jake Ellison 72-75-76--223 (+10)

T51. Ron Harvey, Jr. 73-76-77--226 (+13)

T59. Todd Miller* 78-75-74--227 (+14)

* Competed as an individual

Tags: Results