Red Raiders Head to Georgia for Linger Longer|
March 13, 2008
LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech returns to the links after nearly a month away from competition when the No. 19 Red Raiders tee off Friday at the Linger Longer Invitational in Greensboro, Ga. The squad will encounter a field littered with seven of the nation's top 50 teams, including top-ranked Georgia, which boasts four of the top 20 players in the country.
Texas Tech last played in the UTSA Invitational in mid-February, finishing second in the event. This weekend's tournament is the strongest of the spring season to date as No. 16 Clemson and No. 17 Chattanooga join Texas Tech and Georgia among the top 20 teams in the field. Other participants include (33) Mississippi State, (35) Michigan, (36) Mississippi, (69) South Alabama, (70) Georgia State, (73) Memphis, (80) Eastern Michigan, (90) Purdue, (105) Kennesaw State and tournament host (148) Mercer.
While sophomore Will Griffin leads the team with a 71.8 stroke average, the play of junior Garrett Merrell has been the story early in the spring. In two tournaments the Highland Park, Texas, native has averaged a 69.3 stroke average, carding under-par scores in four of the six rounds. He finished second in his last outing at the UTSA Invitational, shooting even par and finishing one stroke off of the lead. Merrell is third on the team this season with a 72.3 average. Merrell also has four eagles this season, which ranks 11th nationally.
Junior Santiago Rivas is averaging 72.1 strokes per round, while freshman Sergio Franky follows at 72.8. Sophomore Matt Smith, who finished in a ninth-place tie at UTSA, is averaging 74.4 strokes. Freshman Nils Floren, playing in the event as an individual, has a 75.0 stroke average.
Live scoring will be available at www.golfstat.com throughout the event. The 54-hole tournament begins Friday morning at 8 a.m. ET.