SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Listening to Texas Tech coaches and gamers pronounce freshman Baard Skogen’s first title (sounds boring), you’d suppose the Norwegian was not in excessive spirits.
The truth is, it is the other.
The Pink Raiders had a 6:35 a.m. begin time for the primary spherical of the NCAA Championship on Friday, so it was a wake-up name for head coach Greg Sands’ group. Understandably, issues had been a bit quiet on the 20-minute van experience to Grayhawk Golf Membership, till Skogen broke the silence.
“Man, it is like D-Day right here,” he stated. “Let’s get the music going.”
The environment has been nice recently for Texas Tech, and that continued on Friday. The Pink Raiders regarded unfastened (in a great way) once they shot Four-under 276 to take an early lead within the desert.
“While you’ve been doing it for thus lengthy, you realize when you realize it, and you’ll see it of their eyes and see the arrogance,” Sands stated. “The tradition is lastly beginning to take maintain.”
Texas Tech entered the nation 22nd this week, a disappointing place contemplating preseason expectations. However this group has needed to overcome quite a bit, together with the lack of senior chief Sandy Scott to a wrist harm and streaks of dangerous play by two different seniors, Kyle Hogan and Andy Lopez.
The Pink Raiders didn’t win through the common season. Scott didn’t play in any respect within the spring. Hogan received at Maridoe to open his fall earlier than tying 91S t at his subsequent occasion, and he hasn’t made a prime 10 since. Lopez has simply two top-10s in 9 begins.
“It has taken us a while to place all of the items of the puzzle in place,” Sands stated.
With an added emphasis on their thoughts video games in current weeks, the Pink Raiders exploded on the proper time, trailing 26 pictures and profitable the NCAA Albuquerque Regional by 10 pictures. All 5 gamers, together with Hogan and Lopez, completed inside the prime 25, led by Haskins award contender Ludvig Aberg, who tied for fourth. He has seven top-5 finishes this season, together with two wins.
That momentum bled till Friday, the place all 5 Texas Tech incumbents did nothing worse than the ghost. The truth is, the 4 Pink Raiders counting mixed for simply eight bogeys, and Garrett Martin’s 1 out of 71 was the pitching rating. Aberg hit 68 with three birdies in his final 5 holes. Lopez and Skogen added 69s, the latter making 5 birdies.
“We have had a superb group spirit the previous couple of weeks, we have come collectively very well,” Aberg stated, “and that is simply the results of that.”
Despite the fact that there was no wind, Grayhawk wasn’t straightforward due to difficult passers, agency greens, and unpredictable roughness. Texas Tech was properly ready. Aberg stated he hit simply two drives within the first spherical, opting as an alternative for a 2 iron and the just about boring fashion of golf that he does this time of 12 months.
“It is simply endurance,” Aberg added. “Fairways, greens, two putts per pair and hopefully sneak in a few birdies.”
Oh, and switch up the music and maintain the temper going.