May 17, 2007
Tempe, AZ - Saint Mary's junior golfer Mike McRae opened the 2007 NCAA Western Regional with a 2-under par round of 70 at the Karsten Golf Course on Thursday. McRae finished the opening round from the par-72, 7,057-yard golf course with seven birdies and five bogeys.
Starting on the back nine, McRae opened the day with birdies on four of the first five holes, but a bogey on his third hole, the par 3 12th, had him at 3-under par after five holes. Following a par at the 15th hole, McRae dropped another shot with a bogey four at the par-3 16th, but got the shot back with a birdie four at the par five 17th hole.
After a par on 18, McRae's ninth hole, he made the turn at 3-under par with an opening nine score of 34. McRae started his back nine with a bogey on the par-4 first hole, then got back to 3-under with a birdie on the par-4 second. Back-to-back birdies followed on three and four, and a birdie on the par-5 fifth hole. He then dropped another shot at the par-3 sixth hole to and was a 3-under par with three holes left to play. After pars on the seventh and eighth, McRae finished the round with a bogey on nine for an opening round of 70, after shooting a 1-over par 36 on his back nine.
McRae birdied all four of the par-fives, but dropped a stroke to par on three of the four par threes. McRae, who will tee-off on the first hole at 8:23 on Friday, will enter the second round of the Western Regional tied for 40th place overall. He is six shots off the pace set by Erik Flores of UCLA. New Mexico's Charlie Beljan is in sole second at 7-under par and four players are tied for third following rounds of 6-under 66.