Coach Chris Haack
May 7, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. --- As a predetermined host of an NCAA Regional, the Georgia men’s golf team knew its destination before Monday’s selection show. Now, the Bulldogs know who will be joining them in Athens.
The Athens Regional will take place May 17-19 at the UGA Golf Course. The top five teams in the regional will advance to the NCAA Championships May 30-June 3 in Pacific Palisades, Calif.
Invited to the Athens Regional on Monday were No. 1 seed Alabama, No. 2 seed North Florida, No. 3 seed New Mexico, No. 4 seed Georgia, No. 5 seed Iowa, No. 6 seed East Carolina, No. 7 seed Long Beach State, No. 8 seed Augusta State, No. 9 seed Wake Forest, No. 10 seed Houston, No. 11 seed Texas-Arlington, No. 12 seed UNC-Wilmington and No. 13 seed Loyola (Md.). There also will be 10 individuals representing teams that did not make the NCAA field.
Alabama is eighth in the current rankings, followed by North Florida in 10th, New Mexico in 16th and the Bulldogs in 24th. Alabama (SEC), North Florida (Atlantic Sun), UNC-Wilmington (Colonial) and Loyola (Metro Atlantic) won conference titles earlier this season.
“We’re proud to be the host school for this regional,” Georgia coach Chris Haack said. “Our guys have been talking about this tournament all year, and now that it’s almost here, we’re even more excited. The teams that have been selected are good ones, as we knew they would be, and we’ll have our work cut out for us. At this time of year, there’s no margin for error. We know we’ll have to play really, really good golf because of the caliber of teams coming to Athens.”
Georgia will be making its 23rd appearance since the NCAA went to the regionals format for the 1989 season and the Bulldogs have advanced to the NCAAs 16 times in that span. Under Haack, the Bulldogs have been invited to 16 straight regionals, moving on to the NCAAs 13 of the previous 15 seasons. Haack led the Bulldogs to NCAA titles in 1999 and 2005 and runner-up finishes in 2007 and 2011.
This will be the first tournament in Athens for the Bulldogs since the SEC Championship in 1998. However, the UGA Golf Course is no stranger to tournaments, hosting, among other events, the Nationwide Tour’s Stadion Classic, the Liz Murphey Collegiate Classic, the Women’s NCAA Championships and the PGA Junior Championship.
The Athens Regional will have tee times off Nos. 1 and 10 starting at 8 a.m. on May 17 and 18 and starting at 7:30 a.m. on May 19. There is no cost for parking or admission for the Athens Regional.
The other NCAA Regionals will take place in Greensboro, N.C.; Bowling Green, Ky.; Ann Arbor, Mich.; Norman, Okla.; and Stanford, Calif. Eighty-one teams and 45 individuals were selected on Monday for the six regionals.