DURHAM, N.C. - The Duke men's golf team, ranked 17th in the latest Golf World / Nike Golf Coaches' Poll, open NCAA East Regional play on Thursday, May 17 at Grandover Resort East Course (par 72, 7,300 yards) in Greensboro, N.C. The Blue Devils, seeded fourth at the site, begin play on Thursday on No. 10 at 8:25 am and will be paired with Indiana and Big South champion Liberty.
Duke has had a strong season thus far with a tournament victory at the Rod Myers Invitational and five runner-up finishes. Head coach Jamie Green, now in his fourth year with the Blue Devils, has paced the team to four tournament victories and seven runner-up showings in the last two years at Duke. He has collected 22 tournament titles during his head coaching career.
All-ACC selection Julian Suri anchors the Duke lineup along with fellow junior Brinson Paolini. Both players will be making their third NCAA Regional appearance while senior Spencer Anderson and sophomore Austin Cody will be playing the regional for the second time. Junior Adam Sumrall is making his first NCAA appearance.
Suri is having an All-America caliber season ranking 10th nationally with a 70.73 stroke average. His -0.87 stroke average in relation to par is tied for fifth in the NCAA, while he also ranks 17th in the latest Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings. The St. Augustine, Fla., native has a pair of tournament wins and leads all ACC players in top 5 finishes (5), top 10 finishes (6) and rounds in the 60s (9).
Paolini, the 2010 ACC Rookie of the Year and a 2011 All-ACC selection, ranks second at Duke with a 72.38 career stroke average. He has a 72.6 stroke average this season with three top 5 finishes. Paolini recorded his first career victory after firing an eight-under 208 (73-69-66) at the River Landing Intercollegiate. The Virginia Beach, Va., native has 15 rounds of even-par or better golf this season, including 11 under-par rounds.
Anderson ranks second on the team with a 72.3 stroke average to go along with 10 under-par rounds. He has posted a counting team score in all 21 rounds this season and also has five top 20 finishes. Cody, a sophomore from North Charleston, S.C., also has five top 20 finishes to go with a 73.2 stroke average. He has shot even-par or better in six of the last 10 rounds entering regional play.
Sumrall is playing his best golf as a Blue Devil over the last three tournaments with a 72.1 stroke average in that span. He is coming off a tie for 14th at the ACC Championship with a two-under 214. The South Bend, Ind., native led the ACC Championship field with 44 pars during the 54-hole event.
Duke is making its 19th appearance, including each of the last 14 seasons, in NCAA Regional play. The Blue Devils are playing in the NCAA East Regional for the 16th time in school history. Duke has advanced to the NCAA Championship 11 times since regional play began. The team has finished in the top 5 at regionals in each of the last three seasons, including taking medalist honors at the 2011 NCAA East Regional. Duke posted an eight-under 280 in the final round of play at the 2011 NCAA East Regional (Pete Dye River Course - Radford, Va.) to overcome a three-stroke deficit and win an NCAA regional team title for the first time in school history. The Blue Devils, the No. 3 seed overall, closed the tournament with a one-over 865 to finish four shots ahead of top-seeded Georgia Tech.
The NCAA East Regional field includes four conference champions and seven teams ranked in the top 50 of the Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings. Auburn is ranked third overall with UNLV (No. 15), Florida (No. 18) and Duke (No. 19) also ranking in the top 20. Liberty (No. 31), Indiana (No. 33), SMU (No. 42) and Texas Tech (No. 46) enter the regional among the top 50 nationally.
Live scoring for the NCAA East Regional is available at www.golfstat.com. In round updates are also available through the Duke men's golf Twitter page @Duke_MGOLF.
The top five teams and low individual not on one of those teams after 54-holes of play advance to the NCAA Championship (May 29 - June 3) at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Calif.