After a strong 2015-16 campaign in the very competitive Pac-12 conference, the Washington men’s golf team finished its regular season ranked No. 23 in the nation by Golfstat. The Huskies’ consistent play throughout the year earned them a selection to compete in the NCAA regionals in Franklin, Tenn., a 54-hole tournament May 16-18.
The tournament, hosted by Vanderbilt at the 7,190-yard par-72 Vanderbilt Legends Course, is one of six regional contests across the country over the next three days. The UW will compete against 13 other programs at regionals, and the top-five finishing teams will advance to the NCAA championships in Eugene, Ore., later this month.
The Huskies will be seeking the 27th bid to nationals in program history, having advanced past regionals in 15 of the last 17 seasons. The last time the UW won a regional tournament was in 2012 in Norman, Okla.
The UW lineup has been successful this year, claiming three tournament team victories at the Husky Invitational, Gifford Collegiate, and Redhawk Invitational.
The UW’s resume also includes two second-place finishes this spring at the Arizona Intercollegiate and the Bandon Dunes Championship. The Huskies topped off their regular season with a fourth-place finish at the Pac-12 championships in Salt Lake City on April 29-May 1.
Head coach Matt Thurmond will stick with the same lineup used at the conference championships.
The five-man lineup consists of junior Corey Pereira, seniors Jonathan Sanders and Chris Babcock, sophomore Frank Garber, and freshman Carl Yuan. Pereira has led the Huskies all season, being named to the All-Pac-12 First Team with two wins and five total top-five finishes on the year.
The UW will also be counting on Sanders, as the consistent veteran was named to the All-Pac-12 Second Team for the third consecutive year. Sanders has 17 top-10 finishes in his career, including an individual victory at the Redhawk Invitational earlier this year. Yuan had an impressive rookie season with the UW with a pair of top-10 finishes on the season, earning him All-Pac-12 Freshman recognition.
The first 18-hole round of the Franklin Regional will begin Monday morning, with the second and third rounds continuing Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively.
Reach reporter Cody Tyo at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @codytyo