April 4, 2013
TEMPE, Ariz. - Coming off a strong fifth-place finish at last weekend's U.S. Intercollegiate men's golf tournament at Stanford, UC Davis looks to keep the momentum going when it travels for the 41st Annual Thunderbird Invitational at Arizona State beginning Friday.
The 18-team tournament, which will be played on the Sun Devils' own ASU Karsten Golf Course, will feature 18 holes each day from Friday through Sunday. Tee times begin at 7:30 a.m. on both the 1st and 10th holes. UC Davis will begin play at 7:50 a.m. and will play with Arizona, New Mexico and Seattle University.
The Aggies, led by a spectacular tournament from senior Tyler Raber
, enjoyed their best showing of the spring at Stanford last weekend. Raber was fourth in the final standings, opening with a 1-under 69 and then capping his weekend on Saturday with a 65. His latter score is tied for third-lowest score in program history, helped him finish the event 6 under, and was tied for the lowest score in the tournament.
It also helped UC Davis steadily move up the leaderboard where it finished in front of a half-dozen teams ranked ahead of it in the Golfstat standings. Sparked by rounds of 69 and 70 from Matt Seramin
and Matt Hansen
, respectively, the Aggies shot 1-under 279 in the final round to place fifth.
They'll look to keep it rolling at Arizona State's tournament which will host top-ranked California and No. 3 New Mexico. UNLV, ranked 30th, is among the highly ranked teams along with No. 56 Oregon State and No. 57 San Diego State. Also entered are Arizona, Cal State Northridge, Denver, Harvard, Hawaii, Iowa State, New Mexico State, Oregon State, Pepperdine, Seattle and St. John's. The host Sun Devils are ranked 43rd.
UC Davis will use four of the same players it utilized at Stanford - Raber, Seramin, Hansen and Jonny Baxter
. Ben Corfee
will round out the Aggies' lineup. Raber leads the team with a 72.0 stroke average while Hansen (72.8) and Seramin (72.9) are close behind.
Cal won last year's title while Derek Ernst of UNLV won medalist honors at 9-under.
UC Davis will return to co-host the Winchester Classic from Apr. 19-21 at Winchester Country Club in Meadow Vista. That event will be the final one before the Aggies look to defend their Big West Championship beginning Apr. 28 at San Jacinto, Calif.