May 29, 2007 - by
Seminole Men’s Golf Team Begins Play In NCAA Championship Finals Wednesday

May 29, 2007

The Florida State men’s golf team will play in the 110th Annual NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championship at the Golden Horseshoe Golf Club in Williamsburg, Va., May 30-June 2. The four-round event marks the first time the Seminoles have played in the NCAA Championship finals since 1996 when they finished 27th in the team standings with a team score of 623. Oklahoma State, the No. 11 seed in the year’s event, is the defending national champion. Jonathan Moore of Oklahoma State, who won the individual championship last year as a freshman, will look to defend his individual crown after finishing in fourth place at last weeks NCAA Central Regional. The event will be played on the Gold Course at the Golden Horseshoe Golf Club – a par 71, 6,817 yard course designed by Robert Trent Jones, Sr.

Florida State is joined by (in order of NCAA Championship seeding) by Georgia, Tulsa, Alabama, UCLA, Florida, Southern Cal, Lamar, Georgia Tech, Arizona State, Tennessee, Oklahoma State, Stanford, Georgia State, Coastal Carolina, East Tennessee State, South Carolina, Louisville, Auburn, Vanderbilt, Duke, Arizona, Charlotte, Texas Tech, North Carolina, Michigan State, New Mexico, Wake Forest, Texas and Minnesota in the 2007 NCAA Men’s Championship finals. . The Seminoles are seeded 19th (between Auburn and Vanderbilt) in the 30-team field. Along with the 150 players from the above schools, six additional golfers will battle for the individual title: Daniel Summerhays of Brigham Young, Kyle Stanley of Clemson, Chance Piptone of Pennsylvania, Zach Sucher of UAB, Tim Streng of Western Illinois and Dan Woltman of Wisconsin.

Florida State will make its 18th appearance in the NCAA Men’s Golf Championship as it plays in the championship finals at the Golden Horseshoe Golf Club in Williamsburg, Va., May 30-June 2, 2007. The Seminoles first appeared in the NCAA Championship finals in 1956 and most recently made an NCAA finals appearance in 1996. The best finish by a Seminole men’s golf team came in 1957 when they placed fourth in the nation. Most recently, the Seminoles placed 27th in the finals in 1996, seventh in 1995 and 16th in 1994. In finishing seventh at the 1987 NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championship, Seminole All-American Nolan Henke finished in a Florida State best tie for second in the individual standings. Henke finished six strokes behind Oklahoma State’s Brian Watts – the individual medalist that year.

Florida State's NCAA Championship Finals History
Year    Finish    Year    Finish
1956    5th       1982    26th
1957    4th       1983    19th
1958    T4th      1987    7th
1965    6th       1989    16th
1968    10th      1990    8th
1969    12th      1994    16th
1979    18th	  1995    7th
1980    17th	  1996    27th
1981    15th

Florida State begins play in the NCAA Championship finals with the first of four rounds on Wednesday May 30. Prior to the beginning of competition, the Seminoles will participate in two practice rounds (Monday and Tuesday) before playing in one of the early tee times on Wednesday.

Florida State's NCAA Championship Tee Times
Monday          12:00 (practice round)
Tuesday         8:10 (practice round)
Wednesday       7:20 to 7:58 (round 1)
Thursday        12:30 to 1:08 (round 2)
Friday          TBA
Saturday        TBA

Florida State enters the 2007 NCAA Championship finals ranked 22nd nationally in the GolfStat/Sagarin head-to-head rankings and 21st in the latest Golf Week Magazine rankings.

RANKING Jonas Blixt
Junior All-America candidate Jonas Blixt is ranked 42nd in the most recent GolfStat / Sagarin Power rankings and 18th in the latest GolfWeek Magazine rankings.

The Florida State men’s golf team finished in fifth place in the team standings at the NCAA East Regional Championship on the Lakeside Course at the Golf Club of Georgia and earned a spot in the NCAA Championship finals during regional play May 17-19. The Seminoles played their best round and counted four under par individual scores to finish with a seven-under par 281 team score in the third and final round. Florida State shot 281 as a team in the individual round with three individual scores of 70 by junior Jonas Blixt, sophomore Matt Savage and freshman Seath Lauer. The Seminoles also counted a 71 by senior Torstein Nevestad toward the team score. The only score not counted in the team score was a two-over par 73 by freshman Cameron Knight. The Seminoles’ 281 team score was their fourth best of the season. In addition, the 281 team score put up by the Seminoles in the third round was tied for the top team score of the event along with the 281 total by Georgia in the third round. The Bulldogs, currently ranked as the nation’s No. 1 team, won the regional championship by 12 strokes over second place Florida.

Florida State’s line-up at the 2007 NCAA Championship finals includes three players who have played for the Seminoles in the 2006 and 2007 regional championships – Jonas Blixt, Matt Savage and Torstein Nevestad — and two players – Seath Lauer and Cameron Knight – who are in their first years at Florida State and who both played in the 2007 NCAA East Regional Championship.

Highlighted by its fifth place finish at the 2007 NCAA East Regional Championship, Florida State has earned five top-five team finishes this spring. The Seminoles finished in the top-five in two events during the fall to give the team seven top-five team finishes in 11 events this year. The Seminoles earned four top-five team finishes in 12 events during the 2005-06 fall and spring seasons combined.

Seminoles' Top 2006-07 Finishes
Event                                Team Finish
Shoal Creek Intercollegiate          3/15
Notre Dame Fighting Irish Classic    4/12
Gator Invitational                   2/14
Hootie at Bulls Bay                  3/15
ACC Championship                     4/11
Linger Longer Invitational           3/15
NCAA East Regional                   5/27

Florida State has played well this spring with five top-five team finishes and a stroke average of 72.75 strokes in 72 total rounds counted. The Seminoles averaged under par as a team at the Hootie at Bulls Bay Intercollegiate, the Gator Invitational and the ACC Championship. The Seminoles averaged 70.25 strokes per player in the final round of the NCAA East Regional Championship.

Florida State's Spring Stroke Averages
Event                   Team Finish     Strokes    Stroke Avg.
Hootie/Bulls Bay        3/15            845        70.42
Gator Invitational      2/14            861        71.75
ACC Championship        T4/11           863        71.92
NCAA East Regional      5/27            873        72.75
Seminole Inter.         9/15            875        72.92
US Collegiate           15/15           921        76.75

Florida State enters the 2007 NCAA Championship finals with a 73.45 stroke average – the second lowest of the Trey Jones era at Florida State. The Seminoles have taken nearly one full stroke off their overall team scoring average in Jones’s first four years at Florida State. In addition to lowering their overall stroke average, the Seminoles earned a pair of Jones-era best nine top 10 finishes and 26 top-25 individual finishes during the fall 2006 and spring 2007 seasons.

In Trey Jones' First Four Years
Year    NR    T10   T25    Stroke Avg.
2004    71    8     18     74.23
2005    71    5     16     74.79
2006    42    9     26     73.21
2007    21    10    26     73.45

NR=National Ranking/ T10=Top 10 team finishes/T25=Top 25
Individual finishes / /Stroke Avg.=fall and spring seasons combined

Florida State’s Jonas Blixt and Matt Savage were named to the All-Atlantic Coast Conference men’s golf team, as selected by a vote of the league’s 11 head coaches. It marked the first time since the 1994 season that two Seminole men’s golfers have earned All-ACC honors in the same season and the first time since 1998 that a Seminole has earned All-ACC honors. Florida State was one of only four ACC teams to earn multiple selections with the Seminoles, Clemson, Georgia Tech and Wake Forest all placing two players on the all-conference team. Since joining the ACC and competing in golf since 1992, a total of five Seminoles had earned All-ACC honors. Christian Raynor, who earned All-ACC honors in 1994 and 1995 is the only two-time honoree in school history. George McNeil, who is currently playing on the PGA Tour, was the last Seminole to earn All-ACC honors in 1998. Blixt (Hammaro, Sweden) was an automatic member of the All-ACC team as the individual medalist at the ACC Championship in April. He is averaging a career-best 72.53 strokes in 30 rounds during nine tournaments this spring. Savage (Louisville, Ky.) is ranked sixth in the ACC in the latest individual head-to-head rankings by GolfStat. Savage earned his career-best finish of third place at the Shoal Creek Intercollegiate during the fall 2006 season and has finished three of his nine events under par. He is averaging 73.33 strokes in 10 events this year.

All-America candidate Jonas Blixt enters this week’s NCAA Championship with a career-best 72.45 stroke average in 11 events. He was worked as hard as any player in the nation to lower his scoring average during his career and the results are evident by taking a look at his career numbers. Blixt has dropped nearly two strokes from his average this season as compared to his freshman season. In addition, he has earned a career-high seven top-10 finishes including first place finishes at the fall 2006 Shoal Creek Intercollegiate and the spring 2007 ACC Championship.

Blixt By The Numbers
Year      Rds.   Strokes   Low    Top 10    Stroke Avg.
2004-05   29     2,149     68     1         74.10
2005-06   36     2,635     69     1         73.19
2006-07   33     2,391     65     6         72.45
Totals    98     7,175     65     8         73.21

All-America candidate Jonas Blixt, who won individual medalist honors at the 2007 ACC Championship and earned ACC honors for the first time in his career has been selected to represent Europe in the 2007 Palmer Cup presented by Monster. The annual Ryder Cup-style competition between American collegiate golfers and their counterparts from Europe will be played on June 7-8 at Caves Valley Golf Club in Owings Mills, Md. Blixt, a junior, shot a career-best seven-under par 65 in the third round of the ACC Championship on April 22 and became the first Seminole to win the individual ACC Men’s Golf Championship at the Old North State Club in New London, N.C. Blixt finished with a career-best eight-under par tournament score of 208 to defeat Georgia Tech’s Cameron Tringale by one stroke to claim the individual championship. His outstanding performance led the Seminoles to a tie for fourth place finish in the team standings – the best for Florida State since finishing in fourth in the 1996 conference championship. Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech finished tied for the team championship.

Sophomore Matt Savage enjoyed an outstanding freshman season and showed he had all the tools to be successful as a collegiate golfer during his first season at Florida State. He averaged 73.76 strokes in 11 events as a freshman. He continues to utilize those tools this season as he is averaging a career-low 73.33 strokes in 11 events and earned All-ACC honors as a sophomore. Savage has finished at the top of the Seminoles’ leader board in four of the Seminoles’ six events during the spring of 2007 and once during the fall of 2006. In addition, he has finished with scores at 75 or better in 25 of the Seminoles’ 33 rounds this year (fall and spring seasons).

Savage Bringing Down His Scoring Average
Year       Rds.   Strokes   Low   Top 10    Stroke Avg.
2005-06    33     2,434     65    1         73.76
2006-07    33     2,420     65    3         73.33
Totals     66     4,854     65    4         73.55

Sophomore Matt Savage has played in 22 events and finished in the top-25 of the individual standings an incredible 14 times during his career. He finished in the top-25 in four of 11 events as a freshman and in 10 of 11 events as a sophomore. Entering the 2007 NCAA Championship finals, he has finished in the top-25 in 12 of his last 14 events including a tie for 23rd place finish at the 2007 NCAA East Regional Championship. Savage finished in a career-best third place at the fall 2006 Shoal Creek Intercollegiate.

Freshman Seath Lauer enters the 2007 NCAA Championship finals ranked third on the team with a 74.11 stroke average in 27 rounds during nine events. He played the best golf of his collegiate career as he finished with a six-under par score of 210 and averaged 70.00 strokes in three rounds during the Linger Longer Invitational on May 13-14 and finished in a tie for 32nd place at the 2007 NCAA East Regional Championship. For his score at the Linger Longer he earned a tie for fourth place finish – the best of his career – and has now earned three top-20 finishes in the first eight events of his career. His 222 tournament score at the NCAA East Regional Championship was buoyed by a 70 in the final round which allowed him to average 74.00 strokes during the event.

Lauer By The Numbers
Season       Rds.   Strokes   Low   Top 10    Stroke Avg.
Fall 06      6      455       73    0         75.83
Spring 07    21     1,546     67    1         73.62
Improv.                                       -2.21
Totals       27     2,001     67    1         74.40

Senior Torstein Nevestad will play in his first career NCAA Championship this week. He earned his way into the lineup for the ACC Championship, the Linger Longer Invitational and the NCAA East Regional in qualifying after having played in only one event (the Florida State hosted Seminole Intercollegiate) this spring.

Nevestad In His Last Three Tournaments
Event 1-2-3 Par Total Finish

ACC Championship 74-72-72 +2 218 T19
Linger Longer 72-71-72 -1 215 T17
NCAA East Regional 75-76-71 +6 222 T32
Totals/Avgs. +7 72.77 T22.7

…He is averaging 72.77 strokes in his last nine rounds after playing in a total of six rounds in two events for the year prior to the ACC Championship, the Linger Longer Invitational and the NCAA East Regional. He averaged 76.83 strokes in six rounds during the fall 2007 Shoal Creek Intercollegiate and the spring 2007 Seminole Intercollegiate;
…He is a total of seven strokes over par in his last three events. He finished two over par in the ACC Championship, was one-under par in the Linger Longer Invitational and was six-over par in the NCAA East Regional. He was a total of 29-strokes over par in the in the Shoal Creek and Seminole Intercollegiates;
…He has earned two top-20 finishes in his last three events after earning two top-50 finishes in his first two events of the year. He finished in a tied for 19th at the ACC Championship and in a tie for 17th at the Linger Longer after finishing in a tie for 62nd at Shoal Creek and a tie for 50th at the Seminole;
…He has carded six of nine rounds at par or better in the last three events as compared to zero rounds at par or better in his first two events of the year.

Comparing Nevestad's Numbers
Events     Rds.    Strokes    Low    Top 20    Stroke Avg.
First 34   98      7,246      65     12        73.94
Last 3     9       655        71     2         72.77
Improv.                                        -1.17

Freshman Cameron Knight has enjoyed a very consistent freshman season and enters the 2007 NCAA Championship finals with a 75.11 stroke average. He is averaging 75.00 strokes in his first season and has the fifth lowest stroke average among the eight Seminoles who have earned playing time this year. Knight is averaging nearly three strokes less in 18 holes during seven events this spring as compared to nine rounds in three events during the fall season.

Knight By The Numbers
Season       Rds.   Strokes   Low     Top 20    Stroke Avg.
Fall 06      9      692       74      0         76.89
Spring 07    21     1,558     70      0         74.19
Improv.                                         -2.70
Totals       30     2,250     70      0         75.00
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