April 18, 2008
NEW LONDON, N.C. –
The No. 8 ranked Florida State University men’s golf team is in a tie for first place and senior All-America Jonas Blixt is in a tie for fifth place after the first round of the 55th Annual Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s Golf Tournament at the Old North State Club at Uwharrie Point. The Seminoles are tied for first place with No. 13 ranked Duke as they have began the quest for the first ACC Championship in the sport of men’s golf at Florida State. Blixt, the defending individual champion, is two strokes out of the individual lead as he looks to become only the fourth golfer in league history to win consecutive men’s golf individual championships.
Florida State is tied with Duke after both teams carded identical team scores of 279. The Seminoles and the Blue Devils lead third-place North Carolina by two strokes. The Seminoles’ 279 team score during the first round is their fourth best single-round score of the season. Florida State’s top three team scores this season all came at the Gator Invitational earlier this season.
“We did exactly what we wanted to do today,” said Head Coach Trey Jones. “This field is deep with a lot of good teams. You are not going to win or separate yourself (in the first round). We did not put ourselves in a hole. I am proud of the way we played today. We got out to a good start which we haven’t done all year, but we have played well down the stretch. This is a good team. If we putt the ball well, we have a chance to win.”
Blixt (Hammaro, Sweden) was on top of his game from the start of the round. After an unfortunate bogey on the first hole, he played as well as he has all season long over his next 14 holes. He carded five birdies and nine holes of par to move to four-under par after a par on hole No. 14. Blixt finished his round with a bogey and two pars to card a three-under par 69. He has been at or below par in five of his last six rounds and has now carded 10 rounds at 69 or less during his exciting senior season.
Junior All-America Matt Savage (Louisville, Ky.) did Blixt one stroke better and finished the first round with a four-under par score of 68. He is in a tie for second place and is only one stroke out of the individual lead. Savage was masterful during the entire round – from the start to the finish. Savage finished each of his 18 holes at par or better with four birdies and 14 holes at par. He began the round with a birdie to begin at one-under par and moved steadily downward before finishing the round at four-under par. It marked the fifth time this season that he had finished a round with a score at 69 or below.
Sophomore Seath Lauer (Huntington, Ind.) was the third of the five Seminoles to finish at under par as he carded a two-under par score of 70. He is in a tie for 10th place in the individual standings. Lauer was as hot as Savage and Blixt as he carded 17 of his 18 holes at par or better. He was under par for all but one hole the round (he earned a par on his first hole) and did not play a hole over par until the 17th hole. Lauer was a much as three under par for the round as he carded his second consecutive sub-par round.
Savage, Blixt and Lauer were three of the 20 players who finished the round below par and helped the Seminoles rank as one of only three teams in the first round that had three or more players finish the first 18 holes under par.
Freshman Drew Kittleson (Scottsdale, Ariz.) finished with an even par score of 72. He broke off of the tee box quickly and was one-under at the turn and finished back nine at one-over to close at even par. He played 16 of his 18 holes on the afternoon at par or better. Kittleson, who is playing in his first ACC Championship, has played his last four rounds of golf at a total of one-over par. Kittleson is in a tie for 21st place in the individual standings.
Sophomore Cameron Knight finished his first round of play with a four-over par score of 76. He is in a tie for 47th place in the individual standings.
“This is now a 36-hole event and the great thing about that is that we are in it,” said Jones. “If it becomes an 18-hole shootout after tomorrow and we are still in it, I like our chances. Our players are very poised and playing with a lot of composure.”
55th Annual ACC Men's Golf Championship/Par 72/First Round FSU Results Old North State Club at Uwharrie Pt./New London, N.C. T1/11. Florida State 279 T2. Matt Savage 68 T5. Jonas Blixt 69 10. Seath Lauer 70 T21. Drew Kittleson 72 T47. Cameron Knight 76
55th Annual ACC Men's Golf Championship/Par 72/First Round FSU Results Old North State Club at Uwharrie Pt./New London, N.C. T1. Florida State 279 7. Georgia Tech 287 T1. Duke 279 8. Virginia Tech 289 3. North Carolina 282 9. Virginia 294 4. NC State 284 10. Boston College 303 5. Clemson 284 11. Maryland 304 6. Wake Forest 284