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Toreros vault up leaderboard at NCAA Golf Championships

June 2, 2010

Ooltewah, TN - The 25th-ranked USD golf team started the day tied for 16th as they prepared to play their second round in the afternoon slot of the 2010 NCAA Golf Championships. Behind a course record 66 by sophomore Alex Ching (Honolulu, HI), and a solid 68 by junior Gunner Wiebe (Denver, CO), the Toreros vaulted up the leaderboard 11 spots into a tie for 5th with Florida at 576. Ching's 66 was one stroke better than Tiger Woods' 67 he shot at The Honors Course in the 2nd round of the 1996 NCAA Championships. Ching, the 36-hole leader at 9-under-par 135 (69-66), also broke Tiger's 36-hole record of 136, also set in 1996.

The USD Toreros have positioned themselves well after a brilliant team score of 6-under-par 282 today. Wiebe also had his round to 6-under-par with two holes to go, but with darkness approaching fast, he bogeyed his final two holes. After a first round 75, Wiebe improved seven strokes to move up into a tie for 22nd overall at 143. Rounding out USD scoring was junior Jason Shano (Scottsdale, AZ) who shot 73 with four birdies coming over the final 9 holes; junior Scott Brace (Suffolk, England) who shot 75 with a birdie on his final hole; and red-shirt junior Kenneth McCready (79).

The top eight team spots are currently held by Florida State (-14; 562), Oklahoma State (-9; 567), Georgia Tech (-4; 572), Augusta State (-1; 575), San Diego (E; 576), Florida (E; 576), Washington (+1; 577) and Clemson (+1; 577). Virginia did not complete its round, but was 10-under-par for the day and sitting at +2 with just a few holes to play.

Final round pairings and tee times will not be determined until after the completion of second round play. Following the completion of 54 holes, an individual champion will be crowned. The top eight team scores qualify for match play and will be seeded by team finish.

For complete results go to www.golfstat.com.

San Diego Head Coach Tim Mickelson

On his team's round:
"The whole point was to get into position for the third round to get in the top eight. That is exactly what they did. Alex Ching's round and even Gunner, finishing with two bogeys, had great rounds. We are in position now, and if we play well tomorrow we will be in position for top eight finish."

On Alex Ching:
"Alex (Ching) rises to occasions in big events. He did last year and he has done it again this year."

On his team's position:
"We are pretty much going to know, and 1-over or 2-over is probably going to be the number for the eight spot. We know that we have to put in a good round tomorrow."

San Diego Junior Gunner Wiebe
On his finish to round:
"I was pretty disappointed, I got it to six, and should have had it up to eight. I missed two short putts on my first couple of holes. To finish like that is pretty sour. I made a bad swing on No. 8. On No. 9 we had to run up to make our check point time, and I rushed two shots to make it."

On helping his team:
"I know I helped my team to get in good position tomorrow, which is the important part. I just wish I could have finished stronger to give us a better position for tomorrow. I look forward to getting out here tomorrow."

San Diego Sophomore Alex Ching
On his round:
"It was one of those days that everything clicked for me. I went up there not expecting anything. Putts fell and shots fell close to the hole."

On tying the course record of 66:
"It is an awesome feeling. I came in here playing pretty decent golf coming into the tournament, and putts started dropping a little bit more and chips started going closer to the hole."

On the course through two rounds:
"This course, if you take one minute off thinking about what you are doing, can come up and get you. I went into today thinking about every shot and keeping my mind in the present, and I hit some pretty good shots around the greens."

On the rain delay:
"Honestly, it was a recap of last year. We had a rain delay, and I was lighting it up last year at nationals, and I was thinking to myself don't mess up. I started on 18 (ninth hole) when we came back out and I hit a good tee shot, which was another momentum booster from there."

On the lessons he learned from last year:
"Just enjoy it. Last year I was a freshman, and still felt like a freshman. I have those nerves every time I step up to the first tee. This time I think I will be a little more relaxed, sing to myself on the golf course, just thinking about anything else other than golf while I am walking down the fairway."