Kansas in Fourth Place After Day One of Herb Wimberly Intercollegiate

Oct. 24, 2011

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LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Three Jayhawks shot under 70 in the second round as the Kansas men’s golf team posted a season-low 277 (-7) to finish the first day of the Herb Wimberly Intercollegiate in fourth place at 4-under-par overall.

Junior Alex Gutesha led the charge with a career-best 66, while fellow juniors Chris Gilbert and Paul Harris carded rounds of 69 to end the day. For Harris, it was his second-straight round of 69, which made him the top Jayhawk golfer with a two-round total of 138 (-4) to sit in fifth place with 18 holes remaining. Gutesha ended the afternoon right behind Harris with a 36-hole score of 139 (-3) to tie for seventh place. Gilbert fell one stroke shy of making it a KU trio in the top 10, tying for 13th place at 141 (-1).

In round one, KU counted a 73 by senior Doug Quinones for its fourth score, and freshman Dylan McClure shot a 73 to contribute to the team total in the second round. With three Jayhawks in the top 13 and everybody chipping in at least one score, Kansas head coach Kit Grove said the first day was a true team effort.

“I’m proud of them,” said Grove. “Under par through 36 holes is by far our best outing so far. It was a team effort. Alex got it going early and kept the throttle down to shoot a nice number in the afternoon. Chris was solid all day. He didn’t putt as well as he probably would have like to in the morning, but 1-over still isn’t too bad, and Paul not only put one round together, but two rounds.”

Harris’ opening round of 69 marked the first time he cracked 70 as a Jayhawk. The junior who came to Kansas after two years at Central Alabama Community College followed it up with a second-straight 69. Grove said he knew Harris had the potential to shoot well all year.

“Paul played alright at the Kansas Invitational, but he’s struggled other than that,” said Grove. “You don’t get to be the No. 1-rated golfer at any level by accident. He was on the All-Nicklaus Team (as one of the top 24 golfers across all levels of collegiate golf) last year, and you can’t fake your way onto that.”

UNLV leads the tournament being held at the New Mexico State University Golf Course after shooting 25-under-par in the first two rounds. With that in mind, Grove hopes the team makes a push to catch Wichita State (-14) and New Mexico State (-9) on the final day.

“Hopefully we can take the positive things we did today, shoot a good round tomorrow and move up a couple of spots. If we can shoot a good number, we might move up to third or second and end the fall campaign on a positive note.”

The final round will begin with a shotgun start at 9 a.m. Central.