(Lompoc, CA) After shooting a 79 on the first day of the season-opening Point Conception Open for 27th place, Mt. SAC freshman golfer Han Seop Lee turned things around and was the hottest competitor on the challenging La Purisima Golf Course on day two on Monday (1/28).
The 20-year-old South Korean native was the low medalist for the day by a stroke and finished sixth overall for the tournament with a 79-70-149.
As a team, the Mounties finished sixth in the 15-team tournament.
Lee's second-round 70 was the second lowest score of the tourney among the 95 golfers. Preston Gomerall of Santa Barbara CC shot a 68 on day one, which helped the Vaqueros win the tournament.
"I tried my best and struck the ball really well (Monday)," said Lee, who won the Inland Empire Amateur Championship this past fall. "It was a cool experience playing against other colleges.
"We are a strong team, but I'm focused on my game, but obviously I play as a team. It really helps because we push each other."
"It's a tough course, one of the toughest in the state," third-year Mt. SAC Men's coach Greg Osbourne said. "None of our players have played this course before and Han did really well (Monday).
"We're not contending for the top spot yet and we had too many unforced errors. I feel (Sunday) we didn't shoot that well, but (Monday) we shot a lot better."
As a team, the eight golfers (top 5 scores count) shaved 42 strokes off of their first days' performance, with five of the eight shooting in the 70's.
One of the Mounties was making his first start in a competitive tournament of any kind.
Freshman John Dearth, who was a standout baseball player at South Hills and received a scholarship to San Diego State, shot an 82 on day one and shaved four strokes off his total the second day for a 78 for a two-day total of 160.
"This was my first tourney ever, with a score that matters" said Dearth, a towering 6'6" sophomore, who was part of the South Hills 2016 CIF-SS baseball championship. "I could have been better, but I felt like I had control and didn't let the round get away from me.
"Both (assistant) coach Art (Guevara) and coach Greg prepared us for the course and said it was going to be a hard course."
Mt. SAC uses Industry Hills as it's home course and Dearth said "……It is an honor to play there. It is amazing."
Osbourne, who is a PGA member, had high praise for the first-time college golfer.
"John shot a 78 (Monday) and that's a huge improvement. I never thought he'd be able to do that, but he scored well."
Rounding out the eight members of the team and their scores were: Oscar Alegre, Jr. (90-79-169), Cameron Smith (87-83-170) and Yeager Jarrett (96-82-178). Jarrett had the biggest improvement, shaving 14 strokes off of his day one total.
Mt. SAC next will play in the Orange Empire Conference Tee-Off Classic at the Candlewood Country Course in Whittier. Cypress College, which finished fifth, 16 strokes better than the Mounties in the Pt. Conception tourney, will host the event.
Pt. Conception Open
At par-72 La Purisima GC
13 teams -- 1, SBCC-1 390-372--762. 2, Palomar 393-370--763. 3, SBCC-2 381-384--765. 381. 4, Reedley 383-385--768. 5, Cypress 394-377--771. 6, Mt. SAC 402-384--786. 7, Irvine Valley 393-406--799. 8, Ventura 412-393--805. 9, Monterey Peninsula 409-409--818. 10, Mt. San Jacinto 417-406--823. 11, Bakersfield 427-410--837. 12, Taft 431-419--850. 13, Hancock no score-444.
Mt. SAC scores -- Lee 79-70--149; Copeland 81-75--156; Tsui 79-78-- 157; Ibarra 76-83--159; Dearth 82-78--160; Alegre 90-79--169; Smith 87-83-170; Jarrett 96-82--178
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For additional information, please contact the Mt. SAC Sports Information Office at 909.274.4630.