While most students are enjoying the relaxation of summer, the CSU golf team is about to face its
biggest test in years.
The Rams placed second in the South Central Colorado Regional last Saturday which provided them with
a berth into the NCAA Championships on May 31-June 5 in Stillwater, Okla.
It marks the second appearance in the championships for CSU golf, with the first coming in 1999.
â€œWeâ€™re all pretty confident going into the tournament,â€ senior Ryan Peterson said. â€œWe took second
behind the No. 1 team (Oklahoma State) in the country at regionals. That shows we can go out and beat
these teams and thereâ€™s no reason to go out and play scared.â€
Going into the final day of the regional tournament the Rams found themselves in trouble. They were
in sixth place after two rounds, needing to break into the top-five to advance to the championship. But
CSU shot a final-round 9-under-par 279 to move them into second place and more importantly, move
them into the national championship.
The players have scattered around the country in preparation for the tournament. Some have returned
to their respective states for some home cooking, while others are still in Fort Collins taking summer
The team will meet Saturday in Oklahoma to begin final preparations. Regardless of where they are,
coach Jamie Bermel knows that his players are itching to go.
â€œAll the joy from last week has worn off,â€ said Bermel who has guided the Rams to 11 regional
appearances in 12 seasons and will be making his first trip to nationals with CSU. â€œThe guys are starting
to get a little antsy. Itâ€™s time to go play and see where we stand.â€
Peterson echoed his coachâ€™s statement saying that he canâ€™t wait to compete.
â€œWords canâ€™t describe how excited I am and anxious to get down there,â€ he said.
The NCAA golf championship is a 30-team competition. Each team will play three rounds. Following the
final round on June 2, the top-eight teams will advance to a bracket-style playoff with teams going head-
to-head in the single elimination format.
CSU is well-prepared for the stiff competition they will face having played in a regional with nine teams
ranked in the top-50 in the nation.
And after the strong finale at the regional tournament, the Rams enter the championships as a confident
â€œWe wouldnâ€™t be going if we didnâ€™t think we could win,â€ Peterson said.
Assistant Sports Editor Kevin Lytle can be reached at email@example.com.