SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara men's golf, ranked 35th in the recent Golfstat.com poll, returns to action Sunday in the 16-team National Invitational Tournament, hosted by the University of Arizona on the 7,262-yard, par-72 Omni Tucson National Catalina Course.
The Broncos are coming off their second runner-up finish this season after falling by a stroke to San Francisco at the Farms Invitational two weeks ago. Sophomore Matt McCarty took home individual medalist honors for the first time in his career at that event, scoring all three rounds under par for a one-shot victory over a pair of golfers.
McCarty has been the Broncos top finisher in the past two events and is second on the team with a 70.94 stroke average. He'll be joined by Hayden Shieh, who set a course record with a 10-under 62 two years ago when Santa Clara won the NIT, Derek Ackerman, Michiel Eyre III and Will DelBiaggio.
Eyre III earned his fourth career top-10 finish at The Farms, tying for ninth-place with a 218 total playing as an individual. He'll compete as a team member for the first time this season.
"He earned it," head coach Rob Miller said of Eyre. "Michiel's been playing some solid golf since returning from the break and I know he's excited to try to help the team."
Once again the Broncos are part of a challenging field with five teams ranked in the top-50 and an additional six squads ranked in the top-88 of the most recent Golfstat.com poll. Colorado State (21) and Arizona State (29) are ranked higher than Santa Clara with host Arizona (43) and UNLV (46) just behind the Broncos.
The field is scheduled to play 36 holes on Sunday with play beginning at 7:30 a.m. PT with a shotgun start. The final round will cover 18 holes and also open with a shotgun start at the same time. Live scoring is available at Golfstat.com.
Name: National Invitational Tournament
Dates (Site): Sunday-Monday, Feb. 25-26 (Tucson, Ariz.)
Host: University of Arizona
Tournament Field (Rank): Arizona (43), Arizona State (29), Colorado State (21), Iowa State (88), Nevada (71), New Mexico State (143), North Texas (63), Princeton (150), Rutgers (142), Sacramento State (198), San Diego (135), Santa Clara (35), UNLV (46), Utah (78), UTEP (84), Wyoming (70).
Details: The field will play a total of 54 holes with 36 played on Sunday and a single 18-hole round on Monday with the low four of five scores counted each round for the team total. Both days begin with a shotgun start at 7:30 a.m. PT.
Course: OMNI Tucson National Catalina Course
Yardage/Par: 7,262 yards / Par 72
Live Scoring: www.golfstat.com