PALM DESERT, Calif. - One of 11 teams rated in the Top 60 by Golfstat, the 29th-ranked Baylor men's golf team prepares for this season's toughest fields Feb. 25-26 at the Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate.
The fourth annual event, presented by Cleveland Golf, features 24 teams, including four from Golfweek's Top 25 entering the spring season. The 54-hole tournament will be played at the par-72, 7,305-yard Classic Club golf course, which was the host site for the PGA's Bob Hope Chrysler Classic in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Play will begin with two rounds and a 9:30 a.m. CST shotgun start Saturday, followed by the final round at 9:30 a.m. CST Sunday.
The Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate has been rated as the fourth-toughest spring collegiate tournament of 2012 by Golf Digest. At the 2011 Desert Intercollegiate, Santa Clara's Scott Travers won individual medalist honors after a shooting 3-under 213. Texas A&M took home the team title, finishing at 15-over 879.
Senior Joakim Mikkelsen will anchor Baylor's lineup at the No. 1 position. Joining Mikkelsen are fellow senior Lorenzo Scotto and junior Ryan O'Rear. Freshman Mikkel Bjerch-Andresen and redshirt freshman Niclas Mansson will make their first spring appearances in the Baylor lineup.
Earlier this month, Baylor opened its spring season with a third-place finish at the UTSA Oak Hills Invitational in San Antonio. Mikkelsen carded his second career tournament victory, besting Texas Tech's Clement Sordet in a three-hole playoff to take home individual medalist honors. Baylor has five top-five finishes through six tournaments this season, including four top-three showings.
Mikkelsen leads the Bears in every major statistical category - percentage of rounds counted (94.4), stroke average (71.06), score vs. par (-0.44), rounds of par or better (14) and top-10 finishes (5). O'Rear is second to Mikkelsen in both stroke average (72.28) and score vs. par (0.78). Bjerch-Andresen is third on the team in scoring average (72.33) and second in rounds of par or better (9).
Following the Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate, Baylor returns to Texas for the Border Olympics, which will be hosted March 16-17 in Laredo.
WYOMING DESERT INTERCOLLEGIATE INFORMATION
Dates: Sat., Feb. 25-Sun., Feb. 26
Location / Course: Palm Desert, Calif. / Classic Club
Par / Yardage: 72 / 7,305
Field (24 teams): (43) Arizona, (2) Auburn, (29) BAYLOR, Cal Poly, (57) Colorado, Denver, Hawai`i, Houston, Idaho, Iowa State, (19) Kent State, Nebraska, (44) Saint Mary's, (59) San Francisco, Santa Clara, (47) SMU, Southern Utah, (15) Texas A&M, (50) Texas Tech, UC Riverside, (14) UNLV, UT Arlington UTEP, Wyoming