March 23, 2012
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - The University of Notre Dame men's golf team concludes the month of March at the Linger Longer Invitational Saturday and Sunday at the Reynold's Plantation Great Waters Course in Eatonton, Ga. The Irish face a field that sees five of the 11 opponents ranked in the top 30 of the Golfstat rankings.
"We're headed back to one of our favorite places this week," said Irish head coach Jim Kubinski. "Reynold's Plantation is a great golf area and the Great Waters course hosted our match with Yale last year. It's a very good test, with a great mix of holes."
The field will take to the Great Waters Course, which lays out as a 7,073-yard, par-72 test. The tournament will feature 36 holes of golf on Saturday with the final 18 holes taking place Sunday. Both days of golf are scheduled to begin around 8:00 a.m. (ET) with a split tee start.
Notre Dame takes with it four members of the rotation from last weekend's Schenkel Invite in seniors Max Scodro and Chris Walker, junior Paul McNamara III and sophomore Niall Platt. Sophomore Andrew Lane, meanwhile, gets his first test with the Irish travel lineup after being slotted in following a strong individual showing last weekend with his tie for 27th place.
"I believe Paul led the way for us there last season, followed by Niall and they're both in the lineup this weekend," stated Kubinski. "Of course Max is having a great year for us, posting what I believe is the lowest season stroke average in recent history, so I think he'll continue to give us solid rounds. He played very, very well tee-to-green in Statesboro. I anticipate him making more putts this weekend. Chris Walker and Andrew Lane will fill out our five and both are capable of making a ton of birdies. It's Andrew's first start with the travel lineup and something he has worked very hard for. I know he'll be excited to get out and compete."
Joining the Irish in this year's Linger Longer Invite field are (Golfstat rankings in parentheses): Alabama (7), Charleston Southern (106), Charlotte (68), Chattanooga (28), Georgia (25), Jacksonville (138), Kennesaw State (46), Liberty (31), Mercer (90), Oklahoma (27) and South Alabama (87). The Crimson Tide, which won last weekend's Shenkel Invite, are the reigning champions of the Linger Longer Invite, posting an 846 (-18) last season.
"There's no question we're disappointed in our play at the Schenkel," remarked Kubinski. "We had played very well in the days leading into that event, so it was a real shock to see the over-par rounds. We hit plenty of greens, as many or more than most any other team. We just didn't convert the scoring shots. That's golf sometimes though. The putts can start to drop overnight and I think they will for us. There's no doubt our guys have worked hard and prepared well. It's only a matter of getting comfortable, back out competing, and executing the way we can."
Live scoring of the tournament can be tracked via Golfstat.com. Be sure to check back with UND.com for a complete recap of the Irish.