Elgert Slips to 17th at NCAA Championships but advances to fourth round
After two magical rounds on the par-70, 6,679-yard Homestead Resort's Cascades Golf Course, Elgert shot a 5-over par 75 and tumbled from fourth to 17th place through 54 holes at 2-over 212. He is 11 shots off the lead, which is held by UNLV's Ryan Moore at 6-under par 201 after a sizzling third-round 6-under 64.
Still, Elgert's performance was good enough to earn a spot on the tee-times list for the final day as the 30-team, 156-player field was trimmed to the top 15 teams and top six players not on one of the advancing teams.
"Playing as an individual is very tough to reach the last round," Elgert said. "It was certainly one of my goals going into the tournament. I am going to try and forget about today and play hard because I have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Hopefully I will shoot a low number and finish strong."
"I was able to get up and down three times on the first five holes," said Elgert. "Then I got an unfortunate break on the 15th hole and had to take a double bogey. I felt good about rallying back to make two birdies back to back and I felt I was back on track heading into the final nine holes."
Elgert then made par on No. 1 but was unable to hold things together for long, settling for bogeys on No. 2 and 5 and doubling the par-3 No. 4 hole.
"I just had one of those days where things did not go my way," said Elgert. "I was kinda fighting my putter all day and when that happens you're just playing defense and hoping nothing completely catastrophic happens. It was just a tough day for me."
He closed out the round with a birdie on No. 8, but quickly gave the stroke back on No. 9 to finish up at 75 for the day.
"I was excited to play today and I started off with five pars right in a row and felt pretty good about things," said Elgert. "It was just one of those deals where if you lose your focus or slip up for one second on this golf course it's going to be reflected in your score. If you just hit a bad shot here or there you can easily shoot a 75 just like I did today."
With the bad round now behind him, Elgert turns his attention to Friday's final round, which will see him tee off at (ET)/ (CT) on hole No. 1.
"It means a lot to reach the final round because my goal all along was to play all four rounds," Elgert said. "To have the opportunity to fulfill that goal just by teeing it up tomorrow morning puts a smile on my face. I would really like to finish the tournament at par or better and I'll be aiming at finishing up with at least a 68 tomorrow."
Fans and media interested in following live scoring of the tournament can do so live via the Internet at www.golfstat.com.
2004 NCAA Men's Golf Championships
Par 70; 6,679 Yards
Individual Leaders, plus
1. Ryan Moore, UNLV, 67-70-64--201; 2. Chris Nallen, Arizona, 69-67-67--203; 3. Matt Wells, Kentucky, 68-68-68--204; T4. Bill Haas, Wake Forest, 70-68-67--205; T4 Travis Johnson, UCLA, 69-68-68--205; T17. A.J. Elgert, Kansas State, 68-69-75--212.