Husky Men Dominate At US Intercollegiate
April 19, 2009
PALO ALTO, Calif. -- A variety of Husky golf records fell on Sunday, as the men's team blew away the competition at the U.S. Intercollegiate by 15 strokes.
"This is for sure the most impressive victory we've had," said UW head coach Matt Thurmond. "Whenever you can take an eight-stroke lead into the final round and just about double it, that is an amazing feat."
The Huskies shot a collective (267-270-267) 804 to win their fourth tournament title this season, putting them just one behind the 2001-02 team that won the most titles in one season with five. But the total number of tournaments won isn't the only impressive feat the Huskies accomplished, there's also the domineering manner in which they've won. In terms of a team's single-round score, first- and third-round scores and 54-hole scores, Sunday's group of five put on the preeminent performance in Husky golf history. The group, consisting of medalist Nick Taylor, Darren Wallace, Tze Huang Choo, Chris Killmer and Richard Lee, not only broke the 2007 squad's record for lowest single team round at 268, but did so on both the first and third rounds at Stanford Golf Course. Those five also shattered the lowest tournament score by any Husky team. This week's 804 bested the previous mark (816) set in 2005 by 12 strokes.
"It's amazing -- I can't even say anything more," Thurmond said. "I think just about every record has been broken this week for us."
And team records don't typically fall in golf without monstrous individual achievements, and Sunday was no different for the Huskies. Taylor, who had already set the record for most single-season medalist honors by a Husky, added to that feat with his fourth of the 2008-09 campaign. Four medals also ties him for the career mark with Brock Mackenzie. Coming into the final round of the U.S. Intercollegiate, Taylor was five strokes behind Choo for the lead and had no room for error. Taylor was flawless, shooting a career-low 7-under 63 and coming out on top by not carding a bogey. Both his and teammate Darren Wallace's 63 on Sunday are the program's best third-round scores, beating out John Robertson's mark of 64 in 2001 by one stroke. Also, Taylor tied the UW record for the best three-round score with James Lepp's 198 in 2005.
Taylor wasn't the only one to set individual records. Choo, a sophomore, set the mark for the best combined score for the first and second rounds, as he finished the first day 10-under (140) after two rounds.
"This was a great wedge-scoring course, and that is really a strength of ours," Thurmond said. "But more than that I think we were able to get everybody playing well and show what this team is capable of."
The Huskies had the top three finishers in at a tournament that featured six teams ranked in the top 25, as well as 13 of the top 50 golfers in the country. Taylor, who shot a 69-66-63 198 was immediately followed in the standings by Wallace (67-69-63 199) and Choo (65-65-70 200). Killmer followed those three in the Husky ranks with a tie for 40th (72-70-71 213) and Richard Lee tied for 56th place (66-73-78 217).
Such a record-setting win would give any team confidence heading into the conference championship, but the Huskies faced all but one of the other Pac-10 teams this week. And the Dawgs have a home-course advantage, as the Pac-10 Championship will be held a mere 15 miles from UW's campus at the Seattle Golf Club April 27-29.
* Played as an individual