MILTON, Ga. – The second-ranked and third-seeded Alabama men’s golf team defeated New Mexico 4-1 on Friday in the match play quarterfinals of the 2013 NCAA Golf Championship on the par-70, 7,319-yard Crabapple Course at the Capital City Club.
The Crimson Tide advance on to face second-seeded host Georgia Tech at 9:45 a.m. (CDT) on Saturday for a spot in the NCAA Finals on Sunday at 9 a.m. Top-seed California defeated Arizona State to advance to the semifinals in the other side of the bracket and will face No. 5-seed Illinois at 9 a.m. on Saturday.
“We played really well today,” Alabama head coach Jay Seawell said. “We looked really relaxed and I’m firmly convinced that last year’s experience helped a great deal. We looked very comfortable and played just really good golf today.”
Junior Bobby Wyatt led things off for the Crimson Tide in the opening match with a 2&1 win over UNM’s Victor Perez. Wyatt won the opening hole and the match went back and forth until he secure a 1-up lead on the 14th and then won the 17th hole to close out the match.
“Bobby really set the tone in that first match,” Seawell said. “We wanted to put him in that match because he is such a great leader. He has great energy and it was a great match, the tightest match of the day.”
Senior Scott Strohmeyer and junior Cory Whitsett both cruised to big wins. Strohmeyer played the third match and defeated Benjamin Bauch 4&3, ending the match with a par on the 15th hole. Whitsett ended his match with John Catlin even quicker with a 5&4 win that he closed out with a par on the 14th hole.
“Strohmeyer was solid as a rock and how he was in control early and that gave us a lot of confidence,” Seawell said. “Whitsett just played phenomenal golf. He and seven birdies and I thought he looked really good.”
Sophomore Justin Thomas was all square with the Lobo’s James Erkenbeck through six holes before the reigning National Player of the Year won the seventh, 10th, 11th and 14th holes before closing the match with a par on the 15th for a 4&3 win.
Junior Trey Mullinax was the only Tide player to fall on Friday, dropping a 5&4 decision to Gavin Green.
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