WSU Finishes Pac-12 Golf Championships, Bayley Impresses - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

WSU Finishes Pac-12 Golf Championships, Bayley Impresses

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Derek Bayley reading the green at Palouse Ridge as he made WSU history at the Pac-12 Championships. (Photo: WSU) Derek Bayley reading the green at Palouse Ridge as he made WSU history at the Pac-12 Championships. (Photo: WSU)

PULLMAN, Wash. – Freshman Derek Bayley led the Washington State men's golf team, finishing tied for 15th at the 2015 Pac-12 Men's Golf Championships, Wednesday. The finish is the best finish by a WSU freshman at the conference championships in school history. As a team, the Cougars finished 10th in a field that featured eight teams in the national top-25 rankings. WSU carded a fourth-round 377 (+27), bringing its four-round total to 1453 (+53). Washington State finished six strokes ahead of No. 49 Colorado (+59, 1459) and seven strokes back from Arizona (+46, 1446) in eighth place. Stanford took home its second-consecutive tournament title, shooting 4-under (1396).

Bayley provided consistency for the Cougars in the morning, carding par on 11 of his first 12 holes to finish the day 4-over (74). Coupled with a three-round 209 (-1), Bayley finished 3-over (283) and tied for 15th place in a field that featured several of the world's top amateur golfers and the top collegiate golfer in the country, Maverick McNealy. McNealy took home individual medalist honors with a Pac-12 Championships record 362 (-18) and broke the Palouse Ridge collegiate record, firing a fourth-round 61 (-9).

“Hopefully Derek understands how good he really is,” WSU Head Coach Garrett Clegg said. “Golf is a game where belief is a big hurdle. He's every bit as good as a lot of these guys. He just stumbled. He's got a ton of growth and golf knowledge to learn, but he's come a long way.”

WSU senior Michael Anderson fought windy conditions in the morning, firing 1-under on the back nine. An eagle on the 369-yard, par-4 No. 15 hole highlighted Anderson's morning. Anderson went on to card a 77 (+7) and finish the tournament 4-over (284). The senior finished tied for 17th place, the best championships finish of his career.

Redshirt-senior Sang Lee also had the best conference-championships finish of his career. Lee fired the lowest score of the day for the Cougars on the par-70 course, finishing 3-over (73) in the round. Lee (+8, 288) finished the championships with 10 birdies and tied for 29th place.

Sophomore Nick Mandell provided a fourth-round 76 (+6). Mandell (+15, 295) finished the tournament tied for 49th place. Freshman Brian Mogg finished eight strokes back from Mandell. In his first conference championships, Mogg carded a 303 (+23) and finished in 62nd place. Redshirt-senior Alex Wagner (+42, 322) finished 69th.

“No one likes to end their season not feeling great about things,” Clegg said. “Unfortunately, only one team typically ends up feeling great. The only thing you can do is dust yourself off, work on what you didn't do well, and get ready for the next thing. It wasn't the best way to finish, but I don't want it to dull what's on the horizon.”

The conclusion of the 2015 Pac-12 Men's Golf Championships marks the conclusion of Washington State's regular season. The Cougars will await the NCAA's selection of teams and individuals selected to compete in the 2015 NCAA Division I Men's Golf Regionals, May 14-16.

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