April 25, 2010
NEW LONDON, N.C. - On the final day of the Atlantic Coast Conference championship, the Maryland men's golf team tied for ninth place with North Carolina with an 878 (290-289-299). Sophomore John Popeck led the Terps as he finished with a one-under-par 215 (72-69-74) and came in a tie for 15th place.
Georgia Tech claimed their second straight ACC title with a three-day score of 841, 13 strokes ahead of second place Virginia.
During the first day of competition, junior Andrew Kay and Popeck led the Terrapins as he started with a two-under-par 70. Popeck was just behind Kay with an even 72. Maryland concluded day one with a score of 290, tying for seventh.
The Terps' best performances came on day two as Popeck and sophomore Joey Rice each turned in scores of 69 or better. Popeck's 69 tied his career low round. He used seven birdies, four on the back nine, to propel himself amongst the pack. Rice registered a career best and four-under-par 68, securing a spot in the top-20. Kay and junior Donnie Shin added two scores of 76 for Maryland's second day total of 289.
The conclusion of the ACC tournament saw improvement from Kay and junior Tom Hanna. Both took three strokes off their previous day's score. Kay used a one-over-par 73 after staying even all throughout the front nine and birdying two holes on the back nine. Hanna used three birdies on the final 18 for a 76.
Rice matched Hanna's score of 76 and Popeck registered a 74 as Maryland finished the final round with a 299.
Popeck had the fourth most birdies of all individuals in the tournament with13 total. He notched seven of those on the second day. Less than 10 golfers earned an eagle during the three-day championship and Maryland's Hanna was one of them, using only three strokes for the par-five first hole.
Finishing tied for 27th was Kay and Rice with scores of 219. Hanna came in a tie for 47th at 228 and Shin was tied for 50th with a 232.
The Terps have had seven top-10 finishes this season, including a tournament title at Rehoboth Beach. The best collective performance from the Terps came at River Landing. They turned in a two-over-par 285.
Last season at the ACC's, Maryland finished sixth out of 11 competing teams. They saved the best for last carding a 287 on the final day of competition for a final score of 866, just two strokes above par. Former Terps Chris Gold earned a top-10 finish with a two-under-par 214. Current golfer Popeck tied for 13th, second best on the team, with an even 216. Shin and Hanna also competed in the tournament last year.
Maryland now heads to Charlottesville, Va., to compete in the Cavalier Classic hosted by Virginia on May 1 and 2.