Tide Men's Golf Learns NCAA Fate
Alabama has been led this year by Justin Thomas, the Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year and SEC Player of the Year, but Bama has other weapons. Thomas, who is ranked fourth in the nation by Golfweek, will be accompanied by nationally-ranked and fellow All-SEC players Cory Whitsett (ranked 21st), Bobby Wyatt (23), and Hunter Hamrick (53).
"We are excited to get a No. 1 seed and stay relatively close to home in the Athens Regional," Alabama Coach Jay Seawell said. "Now that we know where we will be playing, it is time to begin preparations for a challenging test of golf on the home course of one of our SEC rivals. Our team has lofty goals, and we have to get ready for the task that lies ahead."
It is the third time in the last five years the Crimson Tide has garnered a No. 1 seed at a NCAA Regional. The Tide was also a No. 1seed in 2008 and 2011, advancing to the NCAA Championships in both seasons. UA was a No. 2 seed in 2009 when it won the NCAA Galloway (N.J.) Regional.
The University of Georgia Golf Club is a par-71, 7,240-yard Robert Trent Jones layout that was redesigned by Love Golf Design in 2006.
Joining Alabama in the Athens Regional is No. 2-seed North Florida, No. 3 New Mexico, No. 4 Georgia, No. 5 Iowa, No. 6 East Carolina, No. 7 Long Beach State, No. 8 Augusta State, No. 9 Wake Forest, No. 10 Houston, No. 11 Texas-Arlington, No. 12 North Carolina-Wilmington and No. 13 Loyola (Md.)
Since Seawell's arrival in Tuscaloosa prior to the 2002-03 season, the Crimson Tide has qualified for eight straight NCAA postseasons and nine overall, including five NCAA Championship appearances (2005, 2007-09, 2011). The 2012 selection is the 21st overall NCAA appearance in school history.
The top five teams and the top individual not on an advancing team from each of the six regionals will qualify for the NCAA Championship tournament at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif., May 29-June 3. The field will play 54 holes of stroke play and then be cut to eight teams. Those eight teams will then face off in three rounds of match play to determine the national champion. The individual winner is crowned after the end of stroke play (54 holes).
Last season Alabama won the NCAA Indiana Regional. The Crimson Tide also won the 2009 NCAA Galloway (N.J.) Regional.
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