May 31, 2012
PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. - NC State sophomore Albin Choi finished tied for 37th after a final-round 1-under 70 on Thursday at the 2012 NCAA Championship at Riviera Country Club.
Playing as an individual after his NCAA Regional victory two weeks ago in Ann Arbor, Mich., Choi posted a 54-hole score of 5-over 218 (71-77-70).
His final round began with a bang after an eagle at the par-5 first hole, and immediately followed with a birdie at the extremely difficult 463-yard par-4 second and right out of the gate Choi found himself 3-under-par.
Choi then traded a bogey at No. 4 with a birdie at No. 5 to maintain his hot start. A bogey at No. 9 left him at 2-under 33 at the turn, his best 9-hole stretch of the tournament.
Birdies at Nos. 10 and 11 moved him to 4-under for the day and into the top-25 among the field of 156.
However, three-consecutive bogeys between holes 13-15 squashed any thoughts of Choi recording the best round of the three-day event, which was a 5-under 66 by UCLA’s Patrick Cantlay on Thursday.
Choi, who was selected to the Division I PING All-Region team on Wednesday, shot 2-under on the front nine for the week, and 7-over on the back nine holes.
Choi had seven birdies (four on Thursday) and just two holes worse than bogey for the tournament.
Illinois’ Thomas Pieters won the individual title at 5-under 208 by three shots over Julien Brun (TCU) and Tyler McCumber of Florida.
Alabama, UCLA, San Diego State, Texas, California, Washington, and Oregon are seven of the eight clubs that move on to the match play portion of the championship for the purpose of crowning a national champion. Kent State and Florida State are tied for eighth, and will have a playoff beginning at 11 a.m., ET, on Friday for the right to advance.