Van Sickle Leads BIG EAST Golf Championships Through 18 Holes
April 22, 2007
SIMPSONVILLE, Ky. - Marquette sophomore Mike Van Sickle, a winner of three individual events already this season, is one-third of the way to winning the BIG EAST Conference Championship.
Van Sickle, the 63rd ranked golfer in the country by Golfstat, shot a six-under 66 to lead the tournament by one stroke. Louisville's Adam Rainaud trails by one shot.
Van Sickle jumped out of the gate, scoring a birdie on three of the first five holes. He finished the front nine at four-under. A bogey on the par-four 10th preceded another run. From the 11th to the 16th holes, Van Sickle recorded four birdies. A bogey on the 18th and a birdie by Rainaud kept his lead on the pack from being greater.
"Mike played great today," head coach Tim Grogan said. "He's really striking the ball well and has all spring. Hopefully, he can keep this pace up."
Van Sickle's total was part of a very solid first round for Marquette, which finished the day in third place. The Golden Eagles shot two-over, 290, and are seven shots behind 15th-ranked Louisville, who is playing on its home course at the Cardinal Club Golf Course in Simpsonville, Ky. St. John's is one stroke ahead of Marquette in second place.
Junior Ted Gray shot a one-over 73 in the first round. He shot par on 14 of the 18 holes.
Freshman Dustin Schwab is in 22nd place with a three-over, 75. He started strong going two-under in the front nine. Three bogies and one double bogey plagued him on the back nine.
Freshman Ben Sieg also had a strong start, finishing the day at four-over, 76, tied for 28th. He was even through nine, but suffered bogies on four out of six holes on the back nine.
Junior Michael Bielwaski, like Schwab, was two-under through nine, but he also found himself shooting bogey or worse on four of the back nine to finish at three-over, 75, tied for 39th.