Oct. 24, 2003
Notre Dame, Ind. – The Notre Dame men’s golf team continued its strong-playing ways as the Irish shot a first-round score of three-over par 287, the team’s second-lowest round of the season. The Irish are tied with Texas Tech for eighth place after the first 18 holes of play at the Nelson Invitational at Stanford. Notre Dame trails first-place, defending tournament-champion Duke by nine strokes as the Blue Devils fired a six-under par 278 at the 15-team event. The 54-hole tournament is being played on the par-71, 6,835-yard Stanford Golf Course.
Duke leads three teams by one stroke as the top seven teams at the prestigious tournament all shot under par on the first day. The field includes eight teams ranked in the top 50 of the latest Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index ratings (#16 Duke, #22 Colorado State, #23 Washington, #33 USC, #34 Kansas, #36 Toledo, #38 Missouri and #47 Texas Tech).
Notre Dame is playing in the Nelson Invitational for the second consecutive year, having placed 12th out of 18 teams at last year’s tournament with a team score of 877. The Irish shot 285 in the first round of the ’02 Nelson Invitational.
Individually, the Irish have two golfers who shot season-low scores of two-under par 69 on Friday, placing them in a tie for eighth place after the opening round. Freshman Cole Isban (South Bend, Ind./Mishawaka Marian HS) carded his first below-par round of his career and sophomore Eric Deutsch (Rochester, Minn./Lourdes HS), who is competing as an individual entrant, just missed his career-best mark (68) by one stroke. The two players are five strokes behind tournament-leader Brad Heaven of Toledo who shot a strong round of seven-under par 64.
Isban’s classmate, Shane Sigsbee (McKinney, Texas/McKinney HS), is next for Notre Dame after he fired one-under par 70, his lowest round of the season. Sigsbee sits in a 17th-place tie after the first 18 holes of play.
Following Sigsbee, sophomores Tommy Balderston (Boca Raton, Fla./St. Andrew’s HS) and Scott Gustafson (Rochester, Minn./Eden Prairie HS) turned in an identical score of three-over par 74, placing them in a tie for 55th place. Sophomore Mark Baldwin (Laconia, N.H./New Hampton Prep) rounds out Notre Dame’s lineup, shooting a 76 in the first round.
The second round of the Nelson Invitational will begin on Saturday morning, October 25, with tee times beginning at 8:00 a.m. (PDT) at the 10th hole for the Irish. The final 18 holes of play will get underway with an 8:00 a.m. (PDT) shotgun start on Sunday, October 26.
Results from the Nelson Invitational will be available each day on www.und.com, as well as the Notre Dame Sports Hotline (574-631-3000).
TEAM RESULTS (18 holes): 1. Duke 278; 2.(tie) Colorado 279, Kansas 279, Washington 279; 5. Southern California 280; 6. Colorado State 281; 7. Toledo 283; 8.(tie) Note Dame 287, Texas Tech 287; 10.(tie) Hawaii-Hilo 288, Stanford 288; 12. Missouri 289; 13.(tie) UC-Davis 293, Florida Southern 293; 15. Idaho 296.
TOP EIGHT INDIVIDUALS (of 81): 1. Brad Heaven (Toledo) 64; 2. Ryan Blaum (Duke) 66; 3.(tie) Nolan Martin (Colorado State) 67, Andrew Price (Kansas) 67, Tom Lefebvre (Duke) 67, Edward McGlasson (Colorado) 67; 7. Kevin Ward (Kansas) 68; 8.(tie) Cole Isban (Notre Dame) 69, Eric Deutsch* (Notre Dame) 69, seven others 69.
NOTRE DAME PLAYERS (of 81): 8.(tie) Cole Isban 69, Eric Deutsch* 69; 17.(tie) Shane Sigsbee 70; 55.(tie) Tommy Balderston 74, Scott Gustafson 74; 65.(tie) Mark Baldwin 76.
— ND —