Kentucky Advances to Qualifying Round for Match Play


EUGENE, Ore. – One day at a time. One hole at a time. One stroke at a time. 

The Kentucky men’s golf team has lived that mantra all week and it has paid off as UK will move on to the qualifying round for match play after finishing 11th overall following 54 holes at the 2016 NCAA Championship in Eugene, Ore., on Sunday. Kentucky is in the field among 15 teams who will compete for a spot in the final eight in match play which will begin on Tuesday. 

UK and the other 14 qualifying teams will play another round of 18 holes on Monday to determine the top eight squads for match play. 

Sophomore Cooper Musselman once again led the way for the Wildcats with an even-par round of 70 on the final day of competition. UK has received contributions from all five players throughout the week as every player has had at least one round count towards the team’s score. Musselman is tied for 20th on the individual leaderboard to pace the Cats statistically. 

What head coach Brian Craig is saying:

"It has been a total team effort for us this week. I love the way these guys are playing for each other. Just awesome. And, how about Cooper Musselman and Chip McDaniel leading the way today so we can advance another day? That was gutsy golf and exactly what we needed. Eugene Country Club will likely be an even sterner test tomorrow and we can't wait. I still think our best round is ahead of us."

About the lineup:

Musselman’s consistent play continued on Sunday with the round of 70 to push him into a tie for 20th overall on the individual leaderboard. Musselman has led the Wildcats in scoring in each of the last two rounds. The Louisville, Ky., native’s round consisted of three birdies to offset three bogeys on the afternoon. He birdied the par-four 12th, the par-five 15th and the par-three third. 

Classmate Tyler “Chip” McDaniel posted a 1-over par, 71, on Sunday. Kentucky began its round on the back nine of the Eugene Country Club, and McDaniel once again shined on the Club’s opening nine holes with three birdies including the par-four No. 9. McDaniel is tied for 36th on the individual leaderboard through 54 holes.

Junior Stephen Stallings put together another solid round with a 2-over-par 72. Stallings matched Musselman with three birdies for the day. He had back-to-back under-par scores on the No. 3 and No. 4 to highlight his afternoon. Stallings is tied for 67th overall.

Freshman Lukas Euler posted a score of 75, while senior David Snyder logged a 77 on day three. Euler took home honors as the only Wildcat to earn an eagle during the week when he achieved the feat on the par-five fourth. Snyder had three birdies in his round as well. Euler is currently tied for 112th, while Snyder is tied for 103rd. 

The Tournament Field:

Kentucky is one of six teams from the Southeastern Conference to advance to the final 15. Kentucky is joined by the tournament’s leader in Vanderbilt, along with Arkansas, Florida, LSU, and South Carolina. 

UK finished in 11th overall, four strokes off of Illinois and Oklahoma State’s pace for a top-10 finish. Vanderbilt leads the field with a three-day combined score of 5-over par. Texas is second with a 7-over score, while  Southern California rounds out the top three at 10-over. 

Teams will begin play at 10 a.m. ET on Monday as the field is cut to eight teams. Additionally, nine individuals not on advancing teams will join the field to play a final 18 holes on Monday to determine a 72-hole individual national champion. 

Coverage of the NCAA Championship will be live on the Golf Channel May 30-June 1 to feature the individual and team champions. Fans can also follow along with live scoring here

The Course: 

The Eugene Country Club, organized in 1899, is the second oldest country club in the state of Oregon, antedated only by Waverley of Portland. 

In 1923, the Young-Ford-McAllister properties were purchased and Chandler Egan, one of the nation's greatest tournament golfers, was engaged to lay out a new 18-hole golf course. Over the years this course with its natural setting among tall firs and other scenic wonderments developed a reputation as one of the finest golf courses on the Pacific Coast.

During the past years, improvements at Eugene Country Club have further enhanced the course. The new Robert Trent Jones course was made more challenging and enjoyable by the large spacious greens, the addition of a new lake and waterways, and the sparkling white bunkers. The deep, lush grass of the course continued to be maintained in the highest standard by a completely automatic sprinkling system installed during the course remodeling.

The course has hosted the NCAA Men’s Championship twice before in 1959 and in 1978. 

For the latest on the Kentucky men's golf team, follow @UKMensGolf on Twitter and on the web at UKathletics.com

Eugene Country Club
Eugene, Ore.
May 27-June 1
Par: 70
Yardage: 7,014

11 – Kentucky (289, 286, 288, 863; +23)
T20 – Cooper Musselman (72, 71, 70, 213; +3)
T36 – Chip McDaniel (72, 72, 71, 215; +5)
T67 – Stephen Stallings (75, 71, 72, 218; +8)
T103 – David Snyder (70, 75, 77, 222; +12)
T112 – Lukas Euler (76, 72, 75, 223; +13)