* University of Wyoming press release

MARICOPA, Ariz., --  The opening round of the Inaugural GOLFWEEK National Golf Invitational on Friday was an outstanding one for the Wyoming Cowboys.

UW posted a round of 280 (-8) and sits atop the team standings with a one-stroke lead over second-place Penn State, which shot a 281 (-7). In third place is Washington State at 283 (-5).

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Those three teams played in the same pairing in Friday’s first round and will be paired together again on Saturday. Cowboy senior Tyler Severin led Wyoming’s successful performance on Friday with an opening round 66 (-6) to take the individual tournament lead. He holds a one-stroke lead over Ryan Seamons of Utah Valley, who shot a 67 (-5).

In addition to Severin, Wyoming’s other four team members all shot between 70 (-2) and 74 (+2).  Junior Jimmy Dales is tied for 12th at 70 (-2).  Sophomore Jaren Calkins was the third Cowboy to shoot under par, with a 71 (-1) to tie for 18th.  Senior Kirby Coe-Kirkham and sophomore Patrick Azevedo are close behind at 73 (+1) and 74 (+2), respectively.  Coe-Kirkham is tied for 32nd, and Azevedo is tied for 43rd.

“It was a good solid start for us today,” said UW Director of Golf Joe Jensen. “Obviously, Tyler (Severin) played well -- really all the guys had a good day for the most part. We had a nice balance amongst all our players again today, which has been a strength for us this spring. We wanted to get off to the strong start, and we accomplished that. We’ll get re-calibrated and go out and try to put together another strong round tomorrow.

“It’s been nice to play against some teams we don’t normally see, like we played in a group with Penn State today. It was warm -- in the 100s -- so we only did a light practice after today’s round to let the guys get off their feet for awhile.

“This has been an outstanding experience for the kids thus far. All the little things that GOLFWEEK and the staff at Ak-Chin Southern Dunes have put into this event have been phenomenal. For example, they have a big tent right off the course for the players, with TVs, refrigerators and snacks for them. Everything has been first class.”

After the top three teams, there are a group of six teams all within two strokes of each other. Texas State and Troy are tied for fourth at 285 (-3). Ball State and Utah Valley both shot 286 (-2) to tie for sixth, and Valparaiso and Oral Roberts are tied for eighth at 287 (-1).

The second round of the GOLFWEEK/NGI will tee off beginning at 7:30 a.m., Pacific Time (8:30 a.m., Mountain) on Saturday morning with a pairing of Texas State, Troy and Ball State. Wyoming will begin teeing off at 8:15 a.m., P.T. (9:15 a.m., Mountain) along with Penn State and Washington State. The tournament will conclude with the third and final round on Sunday.

The GOLFWEEK National Golf Invitational is being played on the Ak-Chin Southern Dunes Golf Club.  The course measures 7,360 yards and plays to a par of 72.


Team Standings

1.   Wyoming                           280 (-8)

2.   Penn State                          281 (-7)

3.   Washington State                283 (-5)

4.   Texas State                          285 (-3)

      Troy                                    285 (-3)

6.   Ball State                            286 (-2)

      Utah Valley                         286 (-2)

8.   Valparaiso                           287 (-1)

      Oral Roberts                        287 (-1)

10. Santa Clara                         289 (+1)

11. Stetson                               290 (+2)

12. George Washington            292 (+4)

13. Arkansas State                    294 (+6)


Wyoming Cowboys

1    Tyler Severin                       66 (-6)

T12 Jimmy Dales                        70 (-2)

T18 Jaren Calkins                       71 (-1)

T32 Kirby Coe-Kirkham              73 (+1)

T43 Patrick Azevedo                  74 (+2)

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