Golfers Fall Back In Day 3 At NCAA Golf Tournament

Columbus, Ohio--Auburn's struggles during the opening two rounds were minor in comparison to Friday's adventures as the Tigers finished day three of the NCAA Men's Golf Tournament at 24-over-par.

The ninth-ranked Tigers lost 17 shots to par on Friday with a 301 total, the worst team score of the third round. That dropped the Tigers from 19th place and 12 shots off the lead to a tie for 26th with UAB and Baylor. The Tigers are 23 shots behind Georgia Tech, which is one-over-par, and one stroke ahead of Tulsa. Washington is in third place, just two shots off the lead.

None of Auburn's golfers shot par or better with Lee Williams and Will Claxton leading AU with rounds of three-over-par 74 on the Scarlet Course on the campus of Ohio State University. Williams shot a 73 on Wednesday and a 71 on Thursday. Claxton shot a 76 and 79 his first two days.

Auburn Coach Mike Griffin saw his team win the SEC Championship, but they are struggling in Ohio.

Kevin Haefner slipped to a 76 after opening with rounds of 70 and 72. Jay Mundy shot a 77 after shooting a 72 and a 69. and Jonathon Dismuke's 79 was not counted in Friday's team total. He shot 73 and 75 in his first two rounds.

"We started today just like we did the other days, but we dug too deep a hole for ourselves and were unable to bring it back," Griffin said. "You just tend to have a day like this every now and then. It's unfortunate it had to happen, but we will go on. It is always a little tougher to bring back a round in windy conditions like today."

The first two days of the tournament were plagued by rain delays. On Friday, the winds gusted into the 30 miles per hour range to make conditions tougher.

Graeme McDowell of UAB moved into the individual lead at eight-under-par 205 with a four-under-par 67 Friday and is one shot ahead of Oklahoma State's Hunter Mahan (67-206) and two better than second round leader Brock Mackenzie of Washington (72-207).

The 30-team event runs through Saturday. Auburn is scheduled to tee off at 12:06 p.m. Central.

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