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NCAA Eugene Regional Awaits Flames This Week
No. 6 seed Liberty will begin its quest to return to the national championship this week when the Flames participate in the NCAA Eugene Regional, starting on Thursday morning.
The Flames, currently ranked No. 34 in the country by Golfstat and No. 35 by Golfweek, will be one of 13 teams competing in the three-day, 54-hole event played at the par-70, 6,990-yard Eugene Country Club in Eugene, Ore.
The top five teams in the regional will advance to the 2014 NCAA Men's Golf National Championship, which will be contested at the Prairie Dunes Country Club in Hutchinson, Kan., May 23-28.
Liberty is making its fourth-straight NCAA Men's Golf Regional appearance and sixth overall in program history (2003, 2006, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014).
The Flames advanced to the 2012 NCAA Men's Golf National Championship at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif. Liberty finished in 10th place out of 30 teams and missed advancing the to match play portion of the event by one stroke.
The Flames are led by senior Chase Marinell, who is making his fourth-straight appearance at an NCAA Regional. The Fort Myers, Fla., native leads the Flames with a 72.66 stroke average and has six top 10 finishes in 11 events this season.
Marinell has posted a 72.78 stroke average in three previous NCAA Men's Golf Regional appearances, including three top 25 finishes and a seventh-place showing at the 2012 NCAA Greensboro Regional.
Lindstrom, who was twice named Big South Men's Golf of the Week during the spring, is second on Liberty's roster with a 73.00 stroke average. Lindstrom's best regional appearance also came in Greensboro where he finished tied for 13th place with a three-over par 219 (72-74-73).
Fenasse tied Lindstrom with four top 10 finishes this season and ranks third on the team with a 73.07 stroke average. The junior has finished top 40 in both of his regional appearances, including last year where he placed 32nd with an 11-over par 227 (72-77-78) at the challenging NCAA Fayetteville Regional in Fayetteville, Ark.
McConnell tied Lindstrom for most rounds played in 2013-14 (33) and ranks fourth on Liberty's roster with a 75.24 stroke average. The senior's best regional round came when he closed with an even par 72 to help the Flames claim the 2012 NCAA Greensboro Regional title and advance to the NCAA Men's Golf National Championship.
The final member of Liberty's starting five heading to Eugene this week is Jacob Mast. The senior made his second career start at the 2014 Big South Men's Golf Championship in April, helping the Flames clinch their third conference title in the last four years by finishing in eighth place with a four-over par 220 (76-73-71).
The Flames will have a practice round at the Eugene Country Club on Wednesday before first round action gets underway on Thursday morning. The Flames will be sent off the No. 10 tee (par 4, 401 yards) starting at 8:20 a.m. (PST) along with golfers from No. 4 seed South Carolina and No. 5 seed Baylor.
The Liberty Flames Sports Network will release a video preview of this year's NCAA Men's Golf Regional tomorrow on LibertyFlames.com, while the website will have a hole-by-hole preview of the Eugene Country Club available later in the day on Wednesday.
2014 NCAA Eugene Regional Field
(Latest Golfstat/Golfweek Team Rankings)
Baylor (No. 27/26)
East Tennessee State (No. 58/57)
Houston (No. 10/10)
Liberty (No. 34/35)
North Florida (No. 51/56)
Northern Colorado (No. 149/137)
Oklahoma (No. 15/19)
Oregon (No. 40/44)
South Carolina (No. 22/20)
Stanford (No. 3/4)
Tennessee (No. 47/40)
Tennessee-Chattanooga (No. 64/60)
Wichita State (No. 116/113)
Eugene Country Club (Eugene, Ore.)
Par 70, 6,990 yards
2014 NCAA Eugene Regional Field
Eugene Country Club – Eugene, Oregon (Hosted by Oregon)
NCAA Regional Teams [Conference Automatic Qualifiers]:
1. Stanford [Pac-12 Conference]
4. South Carolina
6. Liberty [Big South Conference]
9. North Florida
10. East Tennessee State
12. Wichita State [Missouri Valley Conference]
13. Northern Colorado [Big Sky Conference]
NCAA Regional Individuals:
1. Cody Blick, San Jose State
2. Kyle Westmoreland, Air Force
3. David Fink, Oregon State
4. Owen Taylor, California State - Sacramento
5. Byron Meth, Pacific
6. Tyler Torano, Loyola Marymount
7. Cory McElyea, San Francisco
8. Pete Fernandez, California - Irvine
9. Alex Franklin, Oregon State
10. Frederick Wedel, Pepperdine