TCU Underclassmen Get Frogs Off to Quick Start at C-USA
April 18, 2005
GULFPORT, Miss. - The TCU men's golf team's title defense began with a stellar 10-under-par round of 278 on Monday at the 2005 Conference USA Championships at The Grand Bear Golf Club in Gulfport, Miss. The Horned Frogs, rated 11th in the nation and looking for their fifth straight league crown, lead second-place UAB by eight shots and third-place Charlotte and Tulane by 11 strokes through 18 of 54 holes.
Of the tournament's 70 participants, TCU junior Colby Beckstrom turned in the second-best card of the day, a 5-under 67. The North Muskegon, Mich. native began the round 1-over through the first four holes, then played 8-under over the next 11 holes. Beckstrom's highlight was an eagle at the 548-yard par-5 15th. Beckstrom holed out from just inside 90 yards, as his wedge shot bounced once just six feet in front of the hole, then landed directly in the cup. A double-bogey six on the 18th kept Beckstrom from taking the individual lead into the clubhouse. He trails East Carolina's Robin Smith (66) by one stroke.
True freshman James Sacheck also posted a round in the 60s, as he fired a 3-under 69. The Zionsville, Ind. product went out with a 2-under 34, then broke par on the second nine (35) thanks to an impressive birdie on the final hole, the second-hardest on the course. Sacheck's round was just one stroke shy of his previous career best. He is tied for fifth place through 18 holes.
Drew Stoltz was the third Frog in red numbers, as the sophomore opened the event by tallying a 2-under 70. Stoltz birdied the 16th hole, a 164-yard par-3, after sticking a 7-iron within 12 feet. Stoltz had 35s on both the front and back sides and resides in sole possession of seventh place. Five of the Colorado native's last six rounds have been par or better.
Two-time first-team All-Conference USA performer David Schultz posted an even-par round of 72 after playing the back nine at minus-1. The senior was able to get to level after notching a birdie on No. 17. Schultz's score is good for a share of 12th position.
Fellow senior J.J. Killeen, who is rated 28th nationally, was the lone TCU player above par on day one, as he carded a 73 (+1). Killeen was 4-over through the first 10 holes before turning it on. Only a missed 4-foot birdie putt on No. 18 kept Killeen over par. A second-team all-league performer last year, he is in 15th place at the tournament.
Since joining the league in 2002, the Horned Frogs have won all three league championships, three C-USA Coach of the Year titles and two C-USA Player of the Year awards. The Conference USA champion receives an automatic bid to the 2005 NCAA Regionals. The Horned Frogs have advanced to the regionals each of the past 15 seasons under head coach Bill Montigel, and have reached the NCAA Championships 10 times over that span.
TCU will begin second-round play on Tuesday morning. There is no live scoring of the event on the internet. Results will be posted on www.gofrogs.com following each round.