The Alabama men’s golf team is in a pressure situation going to the third round of the NCAA National Championship in Sugar Grove, Ill. Bama is in a tie for 16th place with a 36-hole score of 4-over-par 580 after going 5-over in Saturday’s second round
The 30-team field, will be cut to 15 teams following Sunday’s 18 holes. Those 15 teams will then be whittled down to eight teams after a fourth round of stroke play. The eight teams will then begin three rounds of match play for the national title (1 vs. 8, 2 vs. 7, 3 vs. 6, 4 vs. 5) on May 30-31
“It was just one of those square peg in a round hole type of days,” Alabama Coach Jay Seawell said. “We didn’t seem to do a whole lot right. I thought Josh (Sedeno) had a solid round and I am very proud of how he played. We didn’t play terrible as a team, just not good enough on a day that the low scores were attainable. I think just looking at the low scores this morning, maybe we put a little too much pressure on ourselves. We need to regroup because there is a lot of golf to play and this team has always responded throughout the year. We are not far away from where we need to be. We need to regroup and start fresh again tomorrow.
Redshirt freshman Josh Sedeno led the Tide on the afternoon, carding a 3-under par 69 to finish as the only Crimson Tide golfer to shoot under par on Saturday. The Roseville, Calif., native began his round with four birdies over the first seven holes on his way to his seventh round in the 60s over the last 14 rounds he played. He will come into the Sunday’s third round in a tie for 50th overall with a two-day total of even par 144 (75-69)
“I got off to a good start again today, similar to what I did yesterday,” Sedeno said. “I just really tried to focus on keeping it going throughout. I wanted to keep my focus on continuing to hit good shots. I think yesterday I focused too much on the score and today I didn’t, which helped me.
Junior Jonathan Hardee is tied with Sedeno for 50th overall with a 36-hole total of 144 (69-75) on the on the par 72, 7,300-yard Rich Harvest Farms course. Junior Lee Hodges is a stroke back of Hardee with a 145 (70-75) to end the day in a tie for 62nd overall. Sophomore Davis Riley is in a tie for 80th with a 147 (73-74), while junior Steven Setterstrom rounds out the Tide golfers in 139th position with a 154 (78-76)
Alabama is in a three way tie for 16th and just two strokes back of Sunday’s cut line as the team looks toward the third round of play. UNLV, ranked 16th in the nation, is the clubhouse leader at 14-under par 562, followed closely by No. 17 Oklahoma at 563. Eighth-ranked Illinois is in third with a 565, while No. 20 Auburn and No. 4 Vanderbilt round out the top five teams in a tie for fourth with both teams carding a 566 after 36 holes of play
The Crimson Tide, which entered the event as a No. 23 seed, will begin Sunday’s third round off Hole No. 1 at 12:07 p.m. CT. Live stats can be found throughout the national championships on Golfstat.com