Illini equal highest regional seed, headed to tournament in Sugar Grove
Illinois on Monday received the No. 2 seed for the 14-team NCAA men’s golf regional tournament which will start on May 15 at the Rich Harvest Farms Golf Course, in Sugar Grove.
The University of California earned the No. 1 seed for the three-day, 54-hole event.
Coach Mike Small’s Illini are rated eighth nationally in the most recent Golf World/Nike Division I poll. Cal is fourth-ranked.
At stake are berths in the NCAA tournament at each of six regional sites. Five teams per site advance, along with the top individual not on a qualifying team. Overall, six Big Ten universities earned regional bids. Among the schools joining the Illini at Sugar Grove (west of Aurora) is Purdue. Illinois is 10-1 this year in head-to-head meetings with other schools in the Sugar Grove Regional.
Illinois’ No. 2 regional seed equals its highest since the current format was introduced in 2009. Small’s 2011 squad was also a No. 2 seed.
In all, 81 universities are seeking spots in the 30-school NCAA finals, which start on May 23, in Hutchinson, Kan. Other Big Ten schools chosen for regionals are Minnesota, Ohio State, Iowa and Northwestern.