BRYAN, Texas — The Georgia men’s golf team qualified for next week’s NCAA Championships on Wednesday by placing fourth in the Bryan Regional.
The NCAAs will take place May 27-June 1 at Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Since the Regional format was introduced in 1988-89, Georgia has advanced to the NCAAs 24 times, including 21 of 25 under Coach Chris Haack. Overall, the Bulldogs rank seventh nationally with 49 berths in the NCAAs. Haack led the Bulldogs to the 1999 and 2005 national titles, to runner-up finishes in 2007 and 2011, and to the national semifinals in 2015.
“Extending your season and having the opportunity to compete for a national title is always meaningful,” Haack said. “I am so proud of our guys. They came into this tournament knowing what was at stake, and they were focused every round. Our goal all year has been to play for the national championship, and now we have that chance. We’re looking forward to going back to Grayhawk.”
Playing Traditions Club’s par-72, 7,146-yard layout, the Bulldogs closed with an 11-over 299 to land at 1-under 863. Joining the Bulldogs from the Bryan Regional were Arizona (13-under 851), Pepperdine (8-under 856), host Texas A&M (4-under 860), and Kansas (3-over 867).
Freshman Maxwell Ford paced the Bulldogs on Tuesday as he signed for a 1-under 71. Junior Nicolas Cassidy added a 2-over 74, followed by senior Trent Phillips and junior Ben van Wyk each at 5-over 77. Freshman Buck Brumlow had Georgia’s non-counting score of 8-over 80.
Ford led Georgia individually as he came in fifth at 3-under 213. Medalist honors went to Joe Highsmith of Pepperdine, who finished at 6-under 210. Phillips placed 12th at 1-under 217, followed by Brumlow at 4-over 220, van Wyk at 6-over 222, and Cassidy at 8-over 224.
“To say we’re excited would be an understatement,” said Ford, a member of the SEC’s All-Freshman Team. “Our goal all season has been to make it to the NCAAs and compete for a national title. It’s going to be a new experience for all of us except for Trent, but this is where Georgia belongs. We’re in a good place right now with our game and with our chemistry, so we’ll be going in with plenty of confidence.”
The NCAA will open with 54 holes of stroke play May 27-29. The field then will be cut to the top 15 teams to complete a fourth round on May 30. The top eight squads after stroke play will advance to match play, with the quarterfinals and semifinals set for May 31 and the championship slated for June 1.