May 17, 2012
BOWLING GREEN, Ky. -- -
The day started well for senior Justin Dorward of the University of Louisville men's golf team in the first round Thursday in the NCAA Regional at The Club at Olde Stone in Bowling Green, Ky. However, the senior failed to capitalize on his early momentum.
However, the senior from Port St. Fla., finished the day tied for 51st place overall with a 6-over par 78 after the first round of action.
Despite being 6-over par on the day, Dorward knows he left some shots on the course.
"I hit the ball well," said Dorward. "I started off pretty well. My short game let me down. I hit some solid shots that the wind didn't touch. I just need to hit the greens. I'm not trying to get too picky. I need to hit the greens and get some pars because you can't go pin hunting out there. There are opportunities out there, but the pins are pretty tough. You have to be careful where you are landing your ball."
After recording a par on the first hole, Dorward put himself in position for the lead on the second hole with an eagle on the par 5 580-yard hole. He was right where he wanted to be after the first two holes before a bogey on the third. After three straight par, Dorward dug himself a whole with a double bogey on the seventh hole and another bogey on the eighth.
Starting the back nine at 2-over par, Dorward registered another bogey on the 10th hole to give away another stroke. After three straight pars, Dorward made a little charge on the 14th hole when he drive narrowly missed a water hazard, but was in perfect position for a birdie with his location. He chipped to within 15 feet before draining the birdie putt to move to 2-ver par.
On the 15th hole, Dorward drove the ball into the fairway bunker, but saved himself with a nice shot out of trouble. He moved to within 45 yards of the hole with his shot, but three-putted to go to 4-over par with three holes to play.
Dorward would bogey the 16th and 17th holes before nailing a par on the 18th hole.
"I thought he got off to a real good start," said head coach Mark Crabtree. "He got a nice eagle on the second hole and made some nice par saves. He was 1-under par after six holes and playing pretty well. He hit the ball in the bunker on No. 7 and made the turn at a couple over par.
Added Crabtree, "He couldn't get anything going on the back nine holes He struck the ball well, but he has to cut some of those strokes back. He just has to drive the ball a little better because the rough around the greens is pretty tough. He needs to keep it out of that rough. He has to be on top of his game. There were only two guys who shot under par, so he needs to get a couple under par to get back into contention."
Round two begins at 8:00 (CT) and 8:20 (CT) on Friday morning. Dorward will tee off at 10:50 a.m. on Friday.