UNLV and New Mexico are becoming accustomed to slugging it out with one another during the postseason. Now they’ll do it one more time at the NCAA Championship.
Three weeks after New Mexico defeated UNLV by three strokes at the Mountain West Conference Championship, the Rebels got a little revenge at the NCAA West Regional May 21, defeating the Lobos by three at Stanford Golf Course.
The Rebels posted rounds of 281-277-288 for a 6-over 846 total, while New Mexico was at 849 after a final-round-best 281.
Joining the two Mountain West schools in the top 10 were Washington, Arizona State, UCLA, BYU, San Diego State, Arizona, Stanford and Southern California. San Diego State was the lowest seed to advance at No. 13.
Southern Cal won the first hole of a three-team playoff with South Carolina and Pepperdine to earn the final spot.
Stanford freshman Rob Grube closed with a 5-under 65 to win medalist honors. Grube finished three shots clear of Kevin Chappell of UCLA and Nathan Lashley of Arizona. UNLV’s Ryan Moore, No. 1 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings, and then-No. 2 Spencer Levin of New Mexico tied for sixth at even-par 216.
“I have been thirsting for a win all year, and I have been working hard,” said Grube, who had three top 5s in the past month. “I have been trying to relax and have some fun.”
Grube’s 65 was his college low and the first regional victory by a Stanford athlete since Tiger Woods won the 1996 NCAA West Regional. As a team, the Cardinal qualified for their first NCAA final since 2001.
Oregon’s Gregg LaVoie (1-over 211) and Pepperdine’s Michael Putnam
(2-over 212) qualified as the top two individuals not advancing on a team.