May 17, 2012
ANN ARBOR, Mich. – William Park opened play at the NCAA Ann Arbor Regional with a 77, Thursday at a sunny U-M Country Club.
Park is tied for 56th overall and stands seventh among the 10 individual players competing in Michigan. He will tee off at 10:10 a.m. in Friday’s second round at the par-71, 6,723-yard layout.
An early morning frost delayed the start of play by an hour. Once play started, Texas Christian jumped out to the lead in the team race.
A senior from Chapel Hill, N.C., Park adjusted his Term-Ending Exam schedule and made the trek to Michigan earlier in the week. He played a practice round on Wednesday and then posted three birdies, four bogeys, two double bogeys and nine pars as the 54-hole event got under way.
The NCAA Ann Arbor Regional features 10 individuals and 13 teams. The low five teams and the low individual not on an advancing team will move on to the NCAA Finals at Riviera Country Club in Los Angeles, Calif. The NCAA Finals are comprised of the low 30 teams and six individuals not on qualifying teams from six regional sites.
TCU holds an eight-stroke lead over Kent State (286) after the first 18 holes. Kennesaw State and Virginia (287) are tied for third with Oregon fifth (288) and Southern California (289) sixth.
Julien Brun of TCU, Joakim Mikkelsen of Baylor and Anthony Paoliucci posted the low round of the day with 67s.
Park opened his round with three straight pars, a 5, 4 and 5 before taking a bogey-5 on No. 4. He made his first birdie of the day on the par-3, 159-yard eighth hole but ended his front nine with a 7 on the par-4, 414-yard hole and was four-over-par after the first nine holes.
A birdie and double bogey were sandwiched around a par to start the back nine. Park strung together back-to-back pars before a bogey 5 on the par-4, 391-yard 15th hole.
Park closed his round with a par, bogey, birdie finish. He concluded his afternoon with a birdie-3 on the 455-yard closing hole. He shot a 40 on the front and a 37 on the back.
REGIONAL NOTES: Park was paired with Navy’s Drew Selby and fellow individual qualifier Erik Van Rooyen of Minnesota … Army head coach Brian Watts has some history at the U-M Golf Course. While coach at Oregon State, he helped Mitch Gillis win the Wolverine Open in 2006 with a six-under-par championship score. Gillis is playing in his first Nationwide event this week … Sebastian MacLean of Xavier posted the low score (68) among the individuals.