By Cassie Logan | UTAMavs.com
ARLINGTON, Texas – UTA men’s golf lifts the lid on its spring campaign on greener grass at the Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate this weekend in Palm Desert, Calif.
The three-day event, hosted by Wyoming, will be played at the Classic Club and features 22 teams, including the top-10 finishers from last year's competition. The Mavericks will be represented by seniors Zach Galliford and Josh Radcliff, juniors Aaron Guanlao and Nick Barney, and sophomore Tanner Gore.
Live results will be available Friday through Sunday through Golfstat.com.
UTA is coming off a fall slate that included its best finish since 2011, a tie for second at the Bayou City Collegiate Classic in October. The Mavs have transferred that momentum into the spring and the squad is motivated as ever to get back into the swing of tournament play.
"Our plan for the first tournament is to hit the ground running,” UTA head coach Stuart Deane said. “This first event has historically been pretty good for us. Top five or six would be a great start. We're excited to get to some green grass and nice weather. They guys are just ready to play. We've practiced enough and simulated play."
The tournament returns a field of teams that finished in the top-10 last year, and boasts 2016 champion Kansas, who claimed the title while ranked No. 46 among Division I schools. Six of Golfstat.com’s top-75 teams will be in attendance, including No. 5 Texas Tech, No. 10 Oregon, No. 24 Colorado, No. 34 Kansas, No. 66 TCU and No. 75 UNCW. UTA will also get an early peek at fellow Sun Belt member Little Rock.
Junior Aaron Guanlao fired an even-par 72 on the final day of the 2016 Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate to finish seventh in the individual standings. The performance lifted the Mavericks to a tie for ninth, jumping six places from Day 1. UTA's total score decreased each day.
"I really wanted to sharpen things up with my ball striking for this tournament because you have to hit really good shots on this course,” Guanlao said. “I've played there the past two years, so I know what I'm getting into. Everyone's been working hard on their all-around game. I'm expecting good things out of everyone."
The Classic Club is a par 72, 7,322-yard course designed by Arnold Palmer, and was the host of the Bob Hope Chrysler Classics from 2006-08. According to California Golf & Travel Magazine’s Best of 2016 Desert Golf, the site offers the best range and second-best course. It was also awarded Best Golf Course Playing Conditions in Southern California by greenskeeper.org.
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