Hokies tied for eighth after first round of East Regional
van der Vaart tied for seventh individually
May 15, 2008
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - Virginia Tech battled the elements and recorded a three-under-par 281 in the first round of the NCAA East Regional at the 6,961-yard, par 71 Council Fire Golf Club in Chattanooga, Tenn. The Hokies are tied with Auburn and UNC Charlotte following Thursday's opening round. The predicted heavy rain held off, but a steady rain began as the Hokies approached their 12:35 tee time. The showers continued until Tech played the ninth hole, the team's 18th and final hole after beginning play on the tenth tee. All-ACC performer Jurrian van der Vaart (Sr., Almelo, the Netherlands) led the Hokies on Thursday with a four-under-par 67 and is tied for seventh place. Henrik Norlander or Augusta State and Hudson Swafford of Georgia each shot 65 and lead four players by one stroke. Nick MacDonald (Sr., Harare, Zimbabwe) shot two-under-par 69 and is tied for 21st place and Marshall Bailey (Fr., Fincastle, Va.) shot 72 and is tied for 60th place. Drew Weaver (Jr., High Point, N.C.) shot 73 and is tied for 78th and Aaron Eckstein (Fr., Salem, Va.) shot 74 and is tied for 96th. Bailey had the tournament's best shot of the first round, as he carded an eagle 2 at the 453-yard, par 4 15th hole. Bailey hit his drive right of the bunkers down the right side and hit a four-iron from about 200 yards to about 10 feet right of the hole. The ball then trickled into the hole for the eagle. Top-seed Georgia posted an impressive, rain-soaked 19-under-par 265 in the afternoon session and leads Augusta State by eight strokes. The Jaguars shot the morning's best round of 273. SMU is third at 276 and Mississippi State and Middle Tennessee State are tied for fourth at 278. NC State is sixth at 279 and New Mexico State is seventh at 280, one stroke ahead of the Hokies, Tigers and 49ers. Colorado State and host Chattanooga are tied for 11th at 282 and Cal-Irvine is 13th at 283.Coastal Carolina, Western Carolina and Michigan State are tied for 14th at 285. Twenty-seven teams are competing in the event, plus six individuals. The top ten teams and top two individuals not from advancing teams from each of the three regionals advance to the 2008 NCAA Men's Golf Championship at Purdue at the end of the month. The Hokies will tee off on Friday morning in the second round, beginning at 8:05 a.m. The final round will be played on Saturday.