Doug Fortner shot a career-best round at the FAU Spring Break Championship, carding a seven-under par, 64, including nine birdies.

Irish Surge Into Contention At Palmas Del Mar Intercollegiate

March 10, 2009

HUMACAO, P.R. – The Notre Dame men’s golf team was one of the big movers during Tuesday’s second round at the Palmas del Mar Intercollegiate in Humacao, P.R., as the Irish fired a season-low four-under par 284 (the second-lowest score of the day) and rose into third place with a 36-hole total of 583 (+7). Notre Dame is just four strokes behind tournament leader Virginia Commonwealth, and two behind second-place UNC Greensboro going into Wednesday’s final round on the Flamboyan Course (par 72/6,931 yards) at the Palmas del Mar Golf Club.

Junior Doug Fortner (Tustin, Calif./Foothill) paced the Irish effort on Tuesday, tying for the low round in the 54-man field with a career-low four-under par 68. Fortner started the day in a tie for second place and remains in that position at day’s end with a two-round total of 139 (-5), one shot behind the overnight leader, UNCG’s Will Bowman. Fortner had previously carded a 68 in the opening round of the 2007 Fighting Irish Gridiron Golf Classic, with Tuesday’s score in Puerto Rico being his best ever with relation to par.

Sophomore Jeff Chen (Walnut, Calif./Los Altos) and freshman Chris Walker (The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodlands) also are playing well this week, with both men currently tied for 12th place with George Mason’s Branson Real at 147 (+3). Chen fired an even-par 72 on Tuesday, while Walker, who is competing as an individual participant, shot a two-over par 74 in his second round.

Freshman Max Scodro (Chicago, Ill./Notre Dame Prep (Ariz.)) battled a wayward putter at times during Tuesday’s round, but still found his way up into the top 20, presently tying for 19th place at 149 (+5) after a second-round 73. Meanwhile, sophomore Dustin Zhang (Calgary, Alberta/Bishop Carroll) showed excellent resilience on Tuesday, registering a one-under par 71 and surging 14 spots up the ladder to a 26th-place tie at 151 (+7).

His classmate, Connor Alan-Lee (Solana Beach, Calif./La Jolla Country Day School), is one shot further back in the field, sharing 32nd place at 152 (+8) following a second-round 75.

Notre Dame will wrap up its first-ever trip to the Caribbean on Wednesday morning, when the final round of the Palmas del Mar Intercollegiate tees off. Complete results will be posted on the official Notre Dame athletics web site ( and the Notre Dame Sports Hotline (574-631-3000) at the conclusion of the day’s competition.

— ND —

Palmas del Mar Intercollegiate
March 9-10, 2009
Flamboyan Course/Palmas del Mar Golf Club (Humacao, P.R.)
Par 72/6,931 yards

36-HOLE TEAM RESULTS: 1. VCU 579 (299-280); 2. UNC Greensboro 581 (284-297); 3. NOTRE DAME 583 (299-284); 4. Johnson & Wales (Fla.) 588 (294-294); 5. St. John’s 590 (296-294); 6. Santa Clara 598 (309-289); 7. Old Dominion 602 (307-295); 8. Bowling Green 606 (310-296); 9. George Mason 610 (314-296); 10. St. Thomas Aquinas (N.Y.) 621 (304-317).

TOP 5 INDIVIDUALS PLUS NOTRE DAME GOLFERS (of 54): 1. Will Bowman (UNCG) 138 (67-71); 2. Doug Fortner (ND) 139 (71-68); 3. Mark Jargren (VCU) 141 (72-69); 4. (tie) Eric Onesi (ODU) 142 (72-70) and Rafael Campos (VCU) 142 (73-69); 12. (tie) Chris Walker (ND)* 147 (73-74) and Jeff Chen (ND) 147 (75-72); 19. (tie) Max Scodro (ND) 149 (76-73); 26. (tie) Dustin Zhang (ND) 151 (80-71); 32. (tie) Connor Alan-Lee (ND) 152 (77-75).
* – individual participant; score not counted to team total