Oct. 21, 2005
LA QUINTA, Calif. - After struggling through a 313 score in the first round, the UC Santa Barbara golf team played a solid final two rounds to finish 15th at The Prestige at PGA West in La Quinta, Calif.
The Gauchos were in 18th-place after the first round, four-shots back of 17th-place. But UCSB shot 296 in the second round and 298 in the third round to finish at 907 and in 15th-place. The Gauchos finished just two strokes behind Cal, the 14th-place finisher. Santa Barbara's 296 in the second round was the eighth best score of the round.
UCSB was led by freshman Tony Verna who shot a 222 to tie for 28th-place. Verna rebounded from a first round 80 with back-to-back rounds of 71 to pace the Gauchos. Junior Joe Ryon also struggled with an 80 in the first round, but shot 73 and 74 in rounds two and three to finish at 227 and a tie for 50th.
Rounding out UCSB's finishers were sophomore Ryan Keefe who shot a 228 to tie for 55th-place, senior Greg Wells who shot 230 to tie for 64th-place and sophomore Marty Melcher who shot 243 to tie for 87th-place.
UCLA, which shot a 280 in the first round to jump out to an 11-shot lead, led the tournament from start-to-finish. The Bruins finished at a 4-under par 860, 10 shots ahead of BYU. UC Irvine's Tim Cha and Illinois' Danny Zimmerman tied for the individual title at 213.
UCSB returns to the links when it travels to the Barona Collegiate Cup at Barona Creek Golf Course in Barona, Calif., on Monday and Tuesday, Oct. 24-25.