Detry Breaks School Record at NCAA Championships
May 25, 2014
HUTCHINSON, Kan. - The Fighting Illini men's golf team finished a total of nine holes among four players to complete the second round early Sunday morning at the par-70, 6,941-yard course at Prairie Dunes Country Club. Then Illinois gained five spots - moving up to 10th place from 15th, where it ended its round - after the other half of the field played the second round, which included a weather delay of nearly two hours.
Sophomore Thomas Detry finished with a 5-under-par 65, the best round ever by an Illini at the NCAA Championships, to jump 91 spots on the individual leaderboard into a tie for 40th place. It was the biggest jump in the standings of round two. Detry's 65 bested 66s by Charlie Danielson (2013) and Patrick Nagle (2003) as the top round at the NCAA Championships in school history.
"It's always hard to start a round early like that," Detry said of the day's 7 a.m. send-off. "I had a good feeling, though, because I was hitting the ball well on the range. I hit a good tee shot on the first tee, so I was positive. It's a hard hole, the wind was blowing in our faces. Then I made that putt (for birdie on 16), which was big. I had a good par save on 17 and almost made that putt on 18 (for birdie). It was a good eraser score for the team."
The Illini's even-par 280 stood up as the sixth-best score of the second round and put Illinois at +5 overall, just two shots behind eighth-place UCLA (+3). But nine teams were within six shots of the Bruins in the race for the final match-play spot, as 17th-place Houston stood at +9 after the second round. The top eight teams after 54 holes of stroke play advance to the match-play team championship.
Teams in 16th-30th places began third-round play Sunday afternoon with a shotgun start and a limited window to complete the round by sometime Monday morning. If it isn't completed during that time-frame, scores will be nullified and the third round will be repaired to include low 15 teams and six individuals to determine the top eight teams for match play and the individual national champion. At this time, teams 1-15 on the leaderboard are scheduled to tee off Nos. 1 and 10 in a split-tee format beginning at noon Monday. The fourth round for the top 40 individuals that was originally scheduled for Monday has been canceled.
Illinois will begin its third round at 12:30 p.m Monday off the No. 10 tee alongside Auburn and Vanderbilt, which are tied for 11th place at +6. Golf Channel has announced that it will expand its coverage on Monday, as its Golf Central Pregame show will now air from 1-4 p.m. CT, featuring live look-ins at tournament action. Golf Channel's live tournament coverage will air from 4-7 p.m., and both will be streamed via Golf Live Extra.
Also for the Illini, sophomore Charlie Danielson added a second-straight round of 70 to his card to sit at even par for the tournament. Senior Jonathan Hauter notched a 1-over 71, junior Brian Campbell posted a 4-over 74 and junior Alex Burge recorded a 7-over 77. Burge's score did not figure into Illinois' team score.
Danielson's even-par standing lands him tied for 26th place overall, while Detry is tied for 40th at +1. Campbell and Hauter both are +4, which puts them tied for 75th overall. Burge is tied for 120th at +9.
Stanford currently leads the team competition at 12-under-par thanks to a 13-under-par round of 267, which the Cardinal finished before the horn on Saturday. Stanford's Cameron Wilson holds the individual lead at -6 and Cardinal teammate Patrick Rodgers is at -5, with five players at -4.
"This has been a tough week with the weather situation and the coming and going, the stopping and starting," Illini head coach Mike Small said. "Our goal was to come out this morning and try to get some shots back, but we didn't. We finished at 5-over for two rounds, which is solid and respectable. It's right in the middle of the pack. We came out today and hit some good shots, made a couple birdies. But this course is difficult, especially when you have to come back out and play two or three holes. But overall it was a positive finish.
"We're still in the ballgame. We're not out of it and we still have a fighting chance of getting in that top eight if we can get out and play another 18 holes, weather permitting. To shoot even par in this second round was important for that. Would we like to be in a better position? Well, sure. But under the conditions and how we played - we didn't make any putts, hardly at all - all things considered, we still have a fighting chance."
Detry birdied his first hole of the day - the par-4 16th - then made a nice save on No. 17 when his approach rolled off the front of the green, getting up and down for par. On the 18th, he narrowly missed a birdie putt but knocked it in for par to finish his bogey-free 65, which also included birdies on Nos. 1, 4, 7 and 14 on Saturday.
"Thomas got that score that we look for," Small said. "Every day, somebody needs to get that (eraser) score. Thomas responded well. His first round wasn't his best but he came out and fought back, and I'm proud of him for that."
Danielson battled through a rocky round but rebounded with two solid holes to finish Sunday morning. He saved par at the par-5 17th after an errant tee shot, then birdied No. 18 for his 70. He started the round by bogeying No. 1 but got it back with a birdie at the par-5 7th. A bogey at No. 8 put him back over par, but he birdied the par-3 10th hole and added another at No. 13 to get to -1. But his putter left him on the final hole of the day, as he double-bogeyed No. 16 as darkness encroached.
Hauter had an interesting front nine on Saturday, bogeying the first two holes before stringing together four birdies in the next five to get as deep as -2. But that would be his final birdie of the round, as he bogeyed Nos. 8, 13 and - finally, on Sunday - 18 to finish with a 1-over 71.
Campbell started off well, making eight consecutive pars on Saturday. He lost control a bit around the turn, bogeying Nos. 9 and 10, but regained form with three more pars. He bogeyed the par-4 14th and made par at No. 15 before the horn blew on Saturday, then bogeyed his first hole on Sunday before finishing with consecutive pars for a 4-over 74.
Burge also started strong, making five straight pars, but ran in to some trouble as he went bogey-birdie-triple bogey on holes 6-8 to turn at +3. He added a bogey and a birdie on 10 and 11 and seemed to right the ship with four more pars. But he finished with double-bogeys on 16 and 18 to wrap up a 7-over-par round before the horn blew.