March 30, 2013
STANFORD, Calif. - Stanford led the tournament all three rounds clinching the U.S. Intercollegiate title by six strokes at the Stanford Golf Course.
The Cardinal (272-271-274) finished at 23-under-par 817 with four players finishing in the top six of the leaderboard.
"It was neat to see so many of our guys in contention of the individual title," said The Knowles Family Director of Golf Conrad Ray. "It's also always fun to win on your home course, but looking at the bigger perspective having depth is huge. Our next two tournaments at the Western Intercollegiate and the Pac-12 Championships are six-man competitions and it's nice to know we have really competitive players."
Steve Kearney, who competed as an individual, finished eighth at 208 after shooting a 65 (-5) to match his career-best round. In February at the Amer Ari Invitational, Kearney finished fourth after shooting a final round 67 (-5). In both these low rounds, he made seven birdies.
"After shooting 30 on my first nine holes I knew I had a chance and kept my momentum going," said Kearney who started on the back nine--making birdies on the 10th, 11th, 14th, 15th, 16th--and finished with birdies on the first and seventh. "I putted well today and had so much confidence on the greens. Everything seemed to have a chance at going in."
Yun, who also shot a 65 today, was tied for seventh heading into the final round after shooting 70 on the opening day and going two under for 68 in the second round. The senior sneaked into third with six birdies.
"My iron shots were good and I left myself a lot of great birdie looks," said Yun who hit seven fairways and had 28 putts. "I hit a lot of three woods off the tee just like the second day and was just a little more aggressive with the irons."
Rodgers (66-66-70), who tied for first heading into the final day, fell three strokes behind TCU's Paul Barjon who won the tournament at 11-under-par 199. Barjon had a bogey-free round and made birdies on the first, seventh and 16th holes. Rodgers, a sophomore, remained tied after a birdie on the ninth but bogeys on the 11th and 14th sealed his runner-up finish.
"I was feeling good heading into the back nine," Rodgers said. "I was fighting hard and hitting some good shots. I just needed some putts to drop. On the back, I just continued to miss putts and hit a few poor shots that cost me strokes to fall out of the individual tournament."
"I can still take a lot of positives. It was awesome for us to lead the whole event and I personally hit it really well this week and shot some good rounds without making many putts. It's nice to know I can contend with still a lot of areas to improve."
Stanford last won the U.S. Intercollegiate team and individual title in 2007. Today's win becomes the Cardinal's 13th team victory in this tournament.
Philip Rowe, Stanford's Enlight Foundation Assistant Coach and co-tournament director, won the U.S. Intercollegiate individual title in 2002. This time he was on the other side of the team chemistry as a coach.
"In 2002 we didn't have the strength of depth in players that we do now," Rowe said "So winning that was different. We've been working hard on contending as a team."
"I still feel like I'm a player. I'm supporting in a different way and starting to understand each player, knowing how to push all the right buttons. Each guy has a little different recipe and it's about creating a positive vibe."
Rounding out the official lineup was sophomore Patrick Grimes (74-71-75) who tied for 62nd at 220.
The unofficial Stanford White (287-287-280) lineup finished even at 854 tying for ninth.
Kearney led the individuals, followed by freshman Dominick Francks (71-72-70) who tied for 30th at 213. Junior Shane Lebow (72-76-70) carded a 218 to tie for 53rd, while redshirt senior Wilson Bowen (71-74-75) tied for 62nd at 220. Redshirt junior Andre DeDecker (73-72-77) finished at 222, tying for 76th.
Freshman Keegan English (76-76-74), who competed as an individual, tied for 86th at 226.
The Cardinal competes next at the Western Intercollegiate at Santa Cruz, Calif. on April 13-14.
"We've worked hard on our short game and it showed at this tournament," Yun said. "Stanford golf course didn't play tough because of its length or the rough; it played tough because of the fast greens and tough pins. We really managed our game well out there."
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