Courtesy of UCR Athletics
Courtesy of UCR Athletics

While the PGA tour recently started its “West Coast Swing,” the UC Riverside men’s golf team began its spring season at the Arizona Intercollegiate hosted by the University of Arizona. Competing in a field of 14 teams, including California and USC, the Highlanders looked to improve upon their 12th-place finish last season at the Sewailo Golf Club, but didn’t muster up any momentum as they wound up in 13th place.

On the first day of play, Riverside fired a 616 two-round score, which placed them 13th out of 14 clubs. No. 25 USC led the opening day with a four-under-par 564 while California followed in second with a score of 566. Brandon Tsujimoto was the high man for Riverside as he tied for 48th place with marks of 77-75 (152) while the consistent David Gazzolo followed only one stroke behind with a score 75-78 (153). USC’s Anthony Paolucci led the entire field individually, posting a seven-under par score of 135 (65-70).

The second day of the 36-hole event proved to be no better for UC Riverside. The team couldn’t gain any momentum heading into the day as they remained in 13th place for the tournament. The Highlanders, however, did notch their highest score of the event, firing a 302 in the final round of the Arizona Intercollegiate. Gazzolo led the way for the squad with a one-over-par score of 72. Teammate Sam Gillis followed with a 76 along with scores of 77 from Pachara Sakulyong and Leven Simon Seay.

Riverside’s three-round score total of 917 (303-312-302) fell extremely short of first-place California’s mark of 853. For the tournament, Gazzolo once again earned top team honors as the junior tied for 37th place with a 225 (75-78-72). Tsujimoto followed behind with a 232 (77-75-80), good for the 60th best score.

There was a two-way tie for individual first place honors as Cal’s Brandon Hagy and Joel Stalter both finished with scores of 211.

The men’s golf team next competes at the Farms Intercollegiate in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. on Feb. 10.