The University of New Mexico Lobo Men’s Golf Team has received an invitation to compete in the NCAA Division I Golf Championship later this month.
The NCAA Division I Golf Championships is set to take place from May 25-30 at the Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Among the notable teams invited to participate are perennial powerhouses such as Stanford University, the University of Texas, and the University of Alabama.
Joining the Lobos in Scottsdale from the Salem Regional from which UNM advanced are Georgia Tech, Arkansas, North Carolina and Texas A&M. Georgia Tech won the regional at 53-under, with Arkansas second at 45-under, North Carolina third at 43-under and the Lobos in fourth at 42-under. Clemson and Texas A&M tied for the fifth and final qualifying spot, with the Texas A&M Aggies advancing in a playoff.
The Lobos score of 42-under set a school record for the lowest 54-hole total in Lobo men’s golf history. It broke the previous record of 35-under set two weeks ago at the Mountain West Championship. Overall, four of the eight lowest 54-hole totals in program history have come during the 2022-23 season.
The Lobo squad includes sophomore Connor Adams of Dallas; Bastien Amat, a junior from France; Albert Boneta, a senior from Barcelona, Spain; Carson Herron, a sophomore from Deepheaven, Minn., and son of Lobo alumnus Tim Herron; Jacob King, a red-shirt freshman from Boerne, Texas; Virgilio Paz, a freshman from Caracas, Venezula; Alvaro Portillo, a freshmen from Madrid, Spain; Brandon Shong, a senior from Sydney Australia; and Matthew Wadkins, a junior from Rockwall, Texas.
“The guys played great all week,” head coach Glen Millican said. “There are a lot of scoring holes out here, and we did a good job of taking advantage of those. Things just came together in round one and round three, and we played solid yesterday. There have been a lot of great teams and players come through UNM, so it’s really impressive to break the 54-hole scoring record in two straight events.
“It shows that these guys can really light it up. To do that is one thing, but to do it when it really matters the most makes this team special.”
The Lobos opened the day in tied for third place at 25-under, after setting the school record for the lowest NCAA round on Monday at 16-under before shooting 9-under in the second round. In the final round, the Lobos took advantage of the back nine, making the turn at 12-under before completing the round at 17-under, setting a new school record for a NCAA event.
New Mexico was led Matthew Watkins, who shot a 7-under 65, his lowest round of his collegiate career. Brandon Shong shot a final round 67 and Albert Boneta posted a final round 68. Boneta was the low Lobo for the week, finishing T-6th on the individual leaderboard at 12-under. Carson Herron shot a 1-under 71 on Wednesday, while Bastien Amat shot even par 72.
The field of 30 will play the first three rounds of the NCAA Championship May 26-28. The top 15 teams will make the cut and play the final round of stroke play at Grayhawk on May 29. The top eight teams from stroke play will advance to match play, which will crown the national champion. The quarterfinals and semifinals will be May 30 and the final on May 31. Golf Channel will televise the action live for the final three days (Monday-Wednesday).