Cougars Ready to Defend MWC Title
PROVO -- Coming off a first-place finish at the PING Cougar Classic, the BYU men's golf team looks to defend their 2001 Mountain West Conference title on April 29-May 1 in Sunriver Resort, Ore.
The tournament will mark the last MWC event for seniors Manuel Merizalde and Kyle Wight. Merizalde was the 1999 WAC Champion as a freshman and earned first team All-MWC honors as a Sophomore in 2000. Merizalde and Wight will be complimented by a three quickly emerging underclassmen in Greg Machtaler, Ron Harvey, Jr., and Devin Heid. All three have had at least one top 20 performance. Machtaler is especially hot, earning back-to-back top-20 finishes including a 14th-place finish at the ASU Thunderbird Invitational and a ninth-place finish at the PING Cougar Classic.
Despite a looking solid in its last three tournaments, BYU enters the MWC Championship as the fourth-seeded team ranked No. 54 by the Golfweek Division I rankings. San Diego State enters the tournament as the top-ranked team (No. 20) followed by No. 23 New Mexico and No. 43 UNLV. The Cougars are followed by No. 82 Colorado State, No. 126 Air Force, No. 134 Wyoming and No. 164 Utah.
The tournament will be played on the Crosswater Course, a par 72 course stretching over 6,089 yards. This marks the second year in a row the MWC Championship has been held at Crosswater Course. Last season BYU held off the rest of the field by firing a final round 291, to claim the Mountain West Conference Men's Golf Championship. San Diego State, which began the day one shot off the lead, finished second, two stokes back, at 892. Colorado State, which also shot a team score of 292, placed third. New Mexico, which began the day tied for first with BYU, placed
fourth at 899, after shooting a final round 300. UNLV, which shot the days low team score with a 290, finished fifth. Followed by Utah (916), Wyoming (925), and Air Force (947).
The competition will be a total of 54 holes with 18 holes played each day. Tee-off will be at 9 a.m. on Monday and Tuesday, and 8 a.m. on Wednesday. Admission is free to all fans and media, but proper golf etiquette should be observed.