NORMAN — The No. 14 Oklahoma men's golf team is advancing to its seventh consecutive NCAA Championships finals after claiming fourth place at the NCAA Stanford Regional in Stanford, Calif., and the team was paced by sophomore Brad Dalke's individual victory. The Sooners are one of just four programs to qualify for the championship for seven straight seasons, joining Illinois, Texas and USC.
Dalke posted a career-low 54-hole score, a 198 (-12), to earn the first individual medalist honor of his career. His third-round 69 (-1) marked his third consecutive round in the 60s and the eighth of his season.
“It means so much to me to win this week at regionals,” Dalke said. “I've been playing great golf for a while now, and I finally got it all together this week. Most importantly, I felt like I really helped the team advance to nationals, and that is the only reason we came here. It was just a great week overall that I can gain even more confidence from.”
The Sooners fired a 280 (E) in the final round Wednesday to total 837 (-3) for the week at the par-70, 6,727-yard Stanford Golf Course.
“This is a great day for our squad,” eighth-year OU head coach Ryan Hybl said. “Our guys fought hard all week, and even though we didn't play well outside of Brad's great performance, we survived for another week. Brad had one of the best weeks we have ever had here at OU, and I am proud of him. He really carried us this week. This team has a chance, and that's all we can ask for.”
The low five teams and low individual not on those teams from each regional advance to the NCAA Championships. Joining the Sooners from the Stanford Regional are Stanford, Baylor, Pepperdine and North Carolina, while North Florida's Travis Trace qualified as an individual. Stanford and Baylor tied for the team title at 823 (-17). Pepperdine took third at 835 (-5), and North Carolina finished fifth with an 843 (+3).
Joining Dalke in the top 20 individually was OU junior Grant Hirschman, who earned a share for 17th. He registered five birdies en route to a final-round 68 (-2) and an overall 211 (+1).
Senior Max McGreevy and sophomore Blaine Hale tied for 38th at 216 (+6). In the final round, Hale tallied a 70 (E) with a bogey-free back nine, while McGreevy recorded a 74 (+4).
With an overall 219 (+9), junior Rylee Reinertson finished with a share of 53rd place. He logged a 73 (+3) on Wednesday.
The Sooners will vie for a national title May 26-31 at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill.