Eugene, Ore. — The Florida State men’s golf team opened the 2016 NCAA Golf Championships by spending most of round one atop the leaderboard before finishing the day at five-over and in sixth place. The first goal for any of the 30 squads at the championships is to finish in the top 15. Following that cut, the final eight teams advance to match play. After one day, the Seminoles have put themselves in position to accomplish both goals.
On a day when no team finished below par and only 15 of the 156 individuals finished at -1 or better, the FSU men put together one of the better rounds. Led by Josh Lee, who shot even par, Cristobal Del Solar, who was one-over including a hole-in-one, eagle on the 14th, and freshman Corey Carlson (+1), playing in his first NCAA Championship, the Seminoles are only three shots off the lead and six ahead of the first cut.
“We drove it poorly on 6-7 today and that cost us eight shots,” said FSU Head Coach Trey Jones. “But I like where we are at as each one of our guys are confident they can play this difficult course.”
Lee, who shot -1 at the NCAA Kohler Regional helping FSU advance to the NCAA Championships, continued his excellent play in the NCAA postseason on Friday. The junior from Orange Park, Fla. finished the round tied for 16th and is only three shots off the individual lead for the tournament.
“Josh is playing as good as he has played all year and as good as anyone on our team,” said Jones following Friday’s round.
With two of FSU’s top three leaders in scoring average, Hank Lebioda (+4) and Rowin Caron (+3), shooting approximately a combined four strokes over their averages, the Seminoles will enter Saturday feeling especially good about their position in the field. Making Jones feel even better was the fact that FSU was second in the field on par 5’s, shooting six-under and fifth in the field with 15 birdies. Jones will look for his squad to improve on the 18 bogeys and four double-bogeys in the first round to keep their position in the top eight.
“When you play a course this challenging off the tee with fast greens you are going to make some bogeys,” said FSU Head Coach Trey Jones. “We keep telling them it’s not a sprint.”
Florida State will start round two early Saturday morning teeing off at 8:50 PST. The Noles will be playing with familiar faces as they are paired with fellow ACC school Wake Forest and USF. Fans can follow live at GolfStat.com or by following the official FSU Golf twitter feed @FSUGolf.
FSU Round One Results
Team +5 Sixth 285
Lee E 16 70
Del Solar +1 33 71
Carlson +1 33 71
Caron +3 72 73
Lebioda +4 74 87