April 29, 2009
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
On Thursday, the University of Wyoming Cowboy golf team will open the 2009 Mountain West Conference Championship in Tucson, Ariz.
The championship, which will run from Thursday, April 30 through Saturday, May 2, will be contested on the Catalina Course at OMNI Tucson National Golf Club. A single round of 18 holes will be played each day with tee-times beginning at 8 a.m. (Mountain Time).
The Catalina Course plays to a par of 71 and measures 7,163 yards. This marks the third consecutive year that the MWC Championship has been contested at OMNI Tucson National. The Cowboys also played the Catalina course earlier this spring when they participated in Arizona's National Invitational Tournament.
"We are excited to be here, but we've got to step it up this weekend," UW head coach Joe Jensen said. "I love this group of kids and I am excited about them, but it is time to start putting it all together. We are disappointed in how we have played this spring, but with that said there are a lot of positive things that are happening to this young team. We have a very tough conference, but hopefully we can get it together for three days and see where we stand."
The Cowboys' conference championship lineup will consist of four sophomores and one junior. Those sophomores include Phil Henzlik, Gabe Maier, Mike May and Zach Zaremba, while Jared Butler is the lone junior. Each of the four sophomores has played in all 11 tournaments of the 2008-09 season.
In terms of stroke average, Zaremba has been the top Cowboy this season with an average of 74.94 over his 33 rounds. He also has the team's highest tournament finish of the year, a fourth place showing at the 2008 Air Force Falcon Invite. Maier has the team's second best stroke average at 75.63.
"We have played well for about 17 holes a round or had two or three guys play well at the same time, we just haven't put it all together at once," Jensen added. "We have the attitude that it will all come together soon, and we are hoping it happens this weekend. This is the second time we have seen this property this season and the third time in our careers, so hopefully that will help."
Of the nine MWC teams that will be participating in the 2009 conference championships, five are currently ranked in the Top-40 of the latest GolfStat rankings. Those ranked teams include #17 TCU, #22 San Diego State, #24 UNLV, #33 Colorado State and #39 New Mexico.
Colorado State is the defending MWC Champion, as they won their first MWC title last season. The defending individual champion, Eddie Olson of UNLV, will be looking to defend his title from 2008.
The Cowboys will be paired with Utah and Air Force during Thursday's opening round. The three teams will begin teeing-off at 9:40 a.m. (Mountain Time).
Live stats of the entire tournament can be followed online with GolfStat at www.golfstat.com.