Meronk, Gradecki pace Bucs in opening round at The Prestige



LA QUINTA, Calif. (Feb. 15, 2016) – Playing in their first tournament of the spring season, ETSU senior Adrian Meronk (Wroclaw, Poland) and junior Mateusz Gradecki (Oborniki Śląskie, Poland) paced the Buccaneer men’s golf team on day one of The Prestige, which concluded Monday afternoon at the Greg Norman PGA WEST Course.


Meronk was nearly flawless in the opening round as he carded two birdies and a bogey to finish the day tied for 12th at 1-under-par 70, while Gradecki carded four birdies but posted a triple-bogey on his final hole to end the afternoon tied for 24th at 2-over 73. Meronk, an All-American and 31st-ranked player via Golfstat, began the round with a birdie on the par-4, 409-yard No. 1 and went on to par 14 consecutive holes before picking up his final birdie on the par-5, 537-yard 16th. However, after moving to 2-under for the round, the Buccaneer senior bogeyed the following hole resulting in the 70.


Meronk is within striking distance of the individual leader, as Pepperdine’s Frederick Wedel holds a one-shot lead over Stanford’s Brandon Wu and a two-stroke advantage over five golfers tied for third at 3-under 69. Wedel’s eight birdies led the field of 81 golfers as he wrapped up the day at 5-under 66.


As a team, the 51st-ranked Blue and Gold are in 12th at 13-over-par 297, while 27th-ranked LSU sits atop the leaderboard at 7-under-par 277. Fifth-ranked and co-tournament host Stanford (2-under 282) is in second and No. 7 Southern Cal is third at 1-over-par 285.


ETSU’s other countable scores included senior Gudmundur Kristjansson (Reykjavik, Iceland) and freshman Geuntae Kim (Daegu, South Korea). Kristjansson recorded a 3-over 74 in the opening round, while Kim totaled 9-over 80.


The 14-team field features four teams ranked in the top-10, six in the top-30 and nine in the top-60. Individually, three golfers are ranked in the top-10, four in the top-25, and eight in the top-50.


The Bucs are paired with Iowa State and No. 10 Arizona State in Tuesday’s second round, which begins at 10:30 a.m. (EST).

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