Tide Men's Golf Opens NCAA Play

While most golf attention is on the Alabama women's team in the NCAA Championships this week, the Crimson Tide men's golf team of Coach Jay Seawell begins NCAA Regional competition Thursday at the Course at Yale in New Haven, Connecticut. Alabama gets started early Thursday, a tee-off time at 8:20 a.m. EDT (7:20 central), on the 6,753-yard, par 70 course.

As has been the case for the past few years, Alabama will have one of the youngest teams in competition. The Crimson Tide will be attempting to make it to the NCAA Championship Tournament with three sophomors and two redshirt freshmen playing.

Alabama will be paired with Virginia and ETSU Thursday. The teams will begin play on the 10th hole.

Alabama is led by sophomores Bud Cauley and Hunter Hamrick. In last year's NCAA Regional at Galloway, New Jersey, Hamrick was the medalist and Cauley finished third as Bama swept into the NCAA Tournament with ease.

Both Hamrick and Cauley were first team All-Southeastern Conference this year and both have twice won tournaments this season. Cauley is a candidate for the Hogan Award, given to the nation's top college golfer.

After those two, though, experience in national championship competition is lacking. Sophomore Hunter Slatton and redshirt freshmen Lee Knox and Scott Strohmeyer will be making their first appearances in the NCAA postseason.

Knox had his best finish of the season at the SEC Championship by firing a final-round 1-under-par 69 for 4-over-par 214 and tied for 16th place. His 74.96 scoring average ranks third on the team behind Cauley (71.32) and Hamrick (72.38).

Strohmeyer enters the postseason with 75.11 stroke average while Slatton averages 75.36 strokes per round.

Slatton has placed in the top-20 twice this season, with 20th place finishes at the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate and the E-Z-Go Invitational.

Strohmeyer has fired four rounds in the 60s this season to go along with an 11th-place finish at the Jerry Pate and a 15th-place showing at the Linger Longer Invitational.

A recap of round one will be available on RollTide.com following the completion of play. Follow all of the day's action with live scoring updates at www.golfstat.com .

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