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Ducks Soar, Place 2nd in Spring Opener
Release Date: 02/05/2010
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KAMUELA, HI – How’s that for an opener?

The University of Oregon men’s golf team took on a 22-team team field packed with eight of the top 16 programs in the country and grinded through three days of windy conditions at the Mauna Lani Invitational en route to a tie for second place with Washington at 5-over par, two shots back of champion Stanford.

“What a great way to start,” said fourth-year head coach Casey Martin. “Against this field, the guys did an awesome job.”

This was a team accomplishment all the way with each of UO’s scorers among the top 19 individuals, including three in the top 10. Andrew Vijarro tied for eighth at even par for the 54-hole event, and Daniel Miernicki and Eugene Wong tied for 10th at 1-over.

Oregon’s No. 4 man, Isaiah Telles turned in a 3-over 219, tying for 19th.

“I told them afterward that we should have won this tournament,” Martin said. “That’s not to diminish what they accomplished, there are just a few things they need to figure out.”

The Ducks were the most consistent squad on the Big Island, improving each day with scores of 291 (+3), 290 (+1) and 288 (even), respectively. Sixth-place Georgia Tech was the only other school to boast three top 10 finishers.

 “We got off to a great start each day, but playing with the lead brings a different kind of pressure,” Martin said. “If we can continue to start strong and learn to maintain that level through the closing holes, watch out.”

Sean Maekawa carded a 5-over 77 for Friday’s final round on the North Course, finishing tied for 67th at 14-over 230.

Jack Dukeminier and Jack Paton, playing as individuals, were one shot behind the native Hawaiian at 15-over. Paton finished with an impressive round of even-par 72 on Friday.

The Ducks have nearly a month off from competition before playing at the USC Intercollegiate on March 1-2.

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