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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

M-golf heads north

Playing against a rival is always exciting, but playing against a rival with something on the line can make an athlete downright giddy.

The Arizona men’s golf team has a chance to secure itself a place in one of three NCAA regional tournaments as it heads to Tempe to take on ASU and the rest of the conference in the Pacific 10 Conference Championships.

There are about 60 at-large spots open in the NCAA tournament, which is organized similar to the NCAA basketball tournament — with conference tournament champions getting automatic bids. Arizona has a firm grip on one of the at-large spots, but can all but guarantee itself a spot with a solid week in Tempe.

The Wildcats are familiar with ASU’s Karsten golf course, as the last event was there. They finished in fourth place at the ASU/Thunderbird Invitational.

“”It’s really an advantage to guys that haven’t played there before,”” said Rich Saferian, a senior from Wixom, Mich., “”but it helps nonetheless.””

Arizona struggled to find consistent play from the fifth spot which could be highlighted in the Pac-10 tournament — six golfers play counting five scores, as opposed to five golfers playing and counting four scores like most tournaments.

“”I think it’s going to be Trent (Redfern) playing in the fifth spot, and he’s played well when he’s gotten the chance,”” said Jonathan Khan, UA’s second leading scorer with a 72.43 scoring average. “”Coming up with someone in the sixth spot will be big for us.””

UA finished in fifth in 2000, the last time ASU hosted the tournament. In last year’s tournament, hosted by Washington, the Wildcats finished sixth.

Play begins today and continues through Wednesday. NCAA regionals begin on May 13.

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