Dylan Frittelli

Photo Credit: Anthony Mireles | Daily Texan Staff

With the sun beginning to set in the background, Dylan Frittelli set up on the far left end of the practice range at Austin Country Club in the early evening on Thursday. The 27-year-old former Longhorn hit balls as his swing coach, Chuck Cook, kept a watchful eye.

The past two days at the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play hadn’t been exactly what Frittelli desired. He had lost his first two matches, effectively eliminating him from advancing to the knockout round, which begins Saturday.

But Frittelli still had a smile on his face and was upbeat as he beat balls into the range.

“There’s a lot to reflect on,” Frittelli said. “A lot of good stuff, in with a few bad things. I’m still gonna look favorably over the last two days.”

Frittelli had a much different view of this tournament last year. At the time the Johannesburg, South Africa, native was ranked 190th in the world. Only the top 64 in the world qualify for the event. But Frittelli still attended last year’s tournament as a spectator.

This year, though, after two wins in 2017 on the European Tour, he’s right where he expected to be — inside the ropes — a place few thought possible.

“I mean I told a lot of people — I know tons of people. I was running into them. I said I'll be here next year. I'll be playing in this tournament,” Frittelli said in his Monday press conference. “People looked at me: ‘You're 190 in the world, that's hard to get to 64.’ It was a goal I set myself. I kept on telling people, and self affirmation. The more I told myself, the more I started to believe it.”

After losing to world No. 24 Xander Schauffele, 1 down, on Wednesday, Frittelli needed a win on Thursday to stay alive in group play. His opponent was a familiar face — Sergio Garcia, last year’s Masters champion, and someone who Frittelli befriended over a year ago.

“Yes, we are friends, but we are both trying our hardest to beat each other,” Garcia said. “Obviously it's always a little bit more enjoyable when you are good friends with your opponent.”

The crowd on Thursday seemed to be pulling for both players equally — it would’ve been a hard decision one way or the other. Frittelli, while not a big name in professional golf, helped deliver the Longhorns a national championship in 2012. A guy named Jordan Spieth was Frittelli’s teammate at Texas.

“I had lots of fans out there. It was awesome,” Frittelli said. “Dream come true for me.”

Garcia, meanwhile, has recently become a popular face within the Austin golf scene. Last summer, he married former UT golfer Angela Atkins. The two just had their first baby last week.

On Thursday, it was about as Longhorn of a crowd as it gets. UT men’s golf coach John Fields and UT women’s soccer coach Angela Kelly followed the match. Multiple current UT golfers followed as well, including Scottie Scheffler and the 2017 U.S. Women’s Amateur champion, Sophia Schubert.

And then of course, there was Matthew McConaughey, who walked inside the ropes.

“I showed the ‘Hook ‘em’ to him, and Matthew responded with a casual ‘Hook ‘em,’” Frittelli said.

Frittelli built a 2-up lead over Garcia on the front nine but then faltered on the back. Garcia made birdies at the par-4 10th and par-5 12th to square the match. Frittelli hit each of his approach shots in the water on the short par-4 13th and the par-4 14th, and he quickly found himself 2 down to Garcia.

“I played really well through that front nine. And I guess that drive from the ninth green over to the 10th tee kind of just sucked all the life out of me,” Frittelli said. “I didn’t seem to have anything on the back nine.”

Frittelli made a crucial par save at the par-4 15th, birdied the par-5 16th and made a critical 7-footer for par at the par-3 17th to keep the match alive. He was 1 down to Garcia when he arrived at the par-4 18th. Garcia drove the green and two-putted for birdie, while Frittelli made par, giving the Spaniard a 2-up win.

“I love playing with him. He’s a great guy,” said Frittelli, who’s played multiple rounds in Austin with Garcia before. “He’s one of the best players in the history of the game.”

Frittelli has one more match left in Austin. He plays India’s Shubhankar Sharma on Friday at 11:31 a.m.

“Hopefully I can just pull ahead and win early tomorrow,” Frittelli said. “My goal is to beat the traffic on 360 — finish in three hours and hopefully get out of here before the traffic starts.”

Photo Credit: Emmanuel Briseño | Daily Texan Staff

On a picture-perfect morning at Austin Country Club on Monday, Dylan Frittelli stepped on the first tee, readying to tee off for a practice round in preparation for this week’s World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play.

But not before a familiar face joined him out of surprise.

Frittelli’s former University of Texas teammate, Jordan Spieth — who just so happens to be a three-time major champion and the No. 4 player in the world — was trailing from behind.

“I walked on the first tee, and I guess he followed me from the driving range,” Frittelli said.

Since the end of their college careers at Texas, in many ways, Frittelli has been the one trying to follow Spieth. While Frittelli, a South African native, has grinded overseas on the European Tour, Spieth has become one of the biggest stars in the game on the PGA Tour — a stage Frittelli hopes to one day become a mainstay on.

But on Monday, it was Spieth doing the following as he saw Frittelli head for the first tee.

“He’s just the same person he’s always been,” Spieth said of Frittelli. “He hasn’t changed a bit in the last five, six years.”

In the summer of 2012 at Los Angeles’ Riviera Country Club, Spieth and Frittelli led the Longhorns to a national championship — Texas’ first since back-to-back wins in the early 1970s, the days of legends Ben Crenshaw and Tom Kite.

But it was Frittelli who clinched the win, sinking a 30-footer for birdie on the last hole of the decisive match. The 18th green at Riviera quickly turned into a madhouse, as Frittelli dropped his putter, threw down his hat and sunglasses and jumped into the arms of his teammates.

“People tend to forget I made the putt at the national championship,” Frittelli said. “But that was six years ago now, so it’s long gone in my memory. But it’s probably still my biggest moment in golf.”

Since then, Frittelli’s and Spieth’s careers have taken different routes.

Frittelli has won twice on the European Tour, most recently in Austria last June.

“It’s awesome to see because that work ethic (Frittelli) put in in college was a big part of the reason why I worked so hard in college — to try and beat him within our own team,” Spieth said. “That competitive nature has carried over into kind of creating a work ethic for both of us. As professionals, it has bred success for us.”

Spieth, meanwhile, had his breakout year on the PGA Tour in 2015, when he won five times, including at the Masters and U.S. Open. He won the British Open last summer in dramatic fashion. In total, Spieth has collected 11 wins on the PGA Tour.

Frittelli was jokingly asked on Monday what it was like to have Spieth as his groupie this week. But Frittelli quickly dispelled that.

“I’m Jordan Spieth’s teammate,” Frittelli said with a smile. “That’s the big flier on the PGA Tour and European Tour. Hoping to change that. Maybe one day he’ll be co-teammate or something to that effect.”

And maybe someday that could be the case. Frittelli’s dream is to eventually move back to Austin one day and play on the PGA Tour — and of course, win majors like Spieth. 

This week at Austin Country Club, playing against 64 of the top 69 players in the world, Frittelli’s getting a small glimpse of that dream.

“I want to play the best golfers in the world,” Frittelli said. “They happen to be in the U.S. right now, and that’s where I want to live. I’ll stay here in Austin. I’m taxed here in the U.S. That’s basically where I see myself in the future.”

Frittelli and Spieth aren’t the only Longhorns in this week’s field. There’s also Jhonattan Vegas, who played at Texas from 2004–07, just a few years before Spieth and Frittelli helped deliver a national title.

Vegas’ PGA Tour career has largely been up and down. He broke onto the scene in 2011 when he won the Bob Hope Classic. He’s won twice on Tour since then.

Inside the Austin Country Club locker room, a signed picture of Vegas holding the trophy from his first win still hangs on the wall.

“You know what, I’ve seen it once or twice,” Vegas said. “All the good people around Austin Country Club makes this place phenomenal. So obviously, every time I just park in this parking lot, have a huge smile on my face, it has a lot of fond memories being here in Austin. So it’s always a good place that I feel comfortable.”

Vegas, along with Spieth and Frittelli, will try to make some more memories at Austin Country Club this week.

Taking an early look at Texas’ golf team

If you have never been out to Steiner Ranch to see the Longhorns play a round of golf, next year may be the perfect time to catch what is sure to be a talented team on the links. In fact, it may prove to be one of the best teams Texas has ever fielded. Here’s a look at the projected starters for next year’s men’s golf team.

Dylan Frittelli (Pretoria, South Africa) — One of five seniors, Frittelli has shown over the years that he is the real deal. Has two tournament victories in his collegiate career, was named the 2010 Big 12 Player of the Year and is the top-ranked South African amateur. Expect Frittelli to lead this team with his strong play and experience.

Julio Vegas (Maturin, Venezuela) — The junior came on the scene with a bang late last year, proving he deserves a spot among the starters. After redshirting his first year, Vegas also sat out his second year with the team. A powerful player at 24 years old, he also brings experience to the table. He owns two Venezuelan National Junior Championships and is also the younger brother of Jhonattan Vegas, a former Longhorn and current PGA Tour golfer. He isn’t the most consistent player, but Vegas should turn things around in a big way. The talent is undoubtedly there, so it’s more of an issue of harnessing it properly.

Toni Hakula (Espoo, Finland) — The third of the Longhorns’ international players, this sophomore is ready for his chance at the spotlight. The 2011 Big 12 Newcomer of the Year has already played in several professional events as an amateur and even finished as runner-up twice in two events in Denmark. He plays beyond his years in terms of skill and overall confidence on the course, and was integral in Texas’ success a year ago after being used as a starter more often near the end of the season. Look for Hakula to establish himself among the nation’s best young golfers.

Cody Gribble (Highland Park, Texas) — Gribble, a junior, enjoyed a rather fruitful amateur career before he came to Texas, but has yet to display his full ability as a Longhorn. As a freshman he showed flashes of brilliance with second- and third-place finishes to his name, but as a sophomore failed to finish better than 20th in any event. After a number of victories and accolades in high school, Gribble obviously has the talent to be successful. He just needs to find his stroke again.

Jordan Spieth (Dallas, Texas) — The newly crowned top amateur nationwide, Spieth will bring a highly refined golf game to Austin. The freshman has already played with the big boys on the PGA Tour, finishing as high as 16th place in the 2010 HP Byron Nelson Championship. It’s not likely a player of his caliber would redshirt, as head coach John Fields doesn’t have much to teach this guy. If you like watching exceptional players on the course, Spieth is a sight to see. He is skilled in every aspect of the game, and could be the missing piece to the puzzle for a Longhorn golf championship.

Frittelli, Vegas and Hakula are just about locks to start in every tournament for the Longhorns. Having spent most of last season in the starting rotation, they should do the same in the upcoming campaign. Gribble has a fair shot at starting, but the team’s other four seniors could find their way into starting roles as well. Seniors Alex Moon, Steffan Schmieding, Brett Spencer and Adam Wennerstrom have all filled in sparingly in their time as Longhorns, and are capable of carding low rounds with consistency. Junior Johnathan Schnitzer may also vie for a starting spot, as his game began to improve late last season.

Along with the arrival of Spieth, two more freshman will be welcomed to the team in the fall. Kramer Hickok of Plano and Lake Travis’ Tayler Termeer round out an impressive freshman class for the Longhorns. Don’t expect much out of Hickok and Termeer just yet, as talent runs deep with this team.

Whoever the Longhorns plan to use in a given event, rest assured they will be the best-suited player to do so. There is an immense amount of talent and experience on the team, and it should prove to be an exciting and possibly very successful season.

Men’s golf head coach John Fields was recently named the Dave Williams Award winner, presented by the Golf Coaches Association of America. This is Fields’ second coach of the year honor, following his Golfweek Coach of the Year honor, announced June 14.

Along with Fields, senior Dylan Frittelli and freshman Jordan Spieth were named to the All-Nicklaus team Thursday by the GCAA. Because of their outstanding play on the course throughout the 2011-2012 season, Frittelli and Spieth filled two of the 24 spots offered to players of all collegiate divisions of play.

Frittelli had also been named co-recipient of the Byron Nelson award, and along with Spieth, was named to the PING and Golfweek first-team All-American teams, with teammate Julio Vegas earning Golfweek’s third-team honors. Spieth was also a finalist for the Ben Hogan Award and was named Big 12 Freshman and Player of the Year.

Fields and these All-Nicklaus team members were key factors to the Longhorns’ seven tournament victories and the program’s third national title last year.

The men’s golf team poses with their trophy in front of the tower Saturday night. The tower was lit in honor of their NCAA Championship win.

Photo Credit: Marisa Vasquez | Daily Texan Staff

Players, coaches, family, friends and fans alike gathered in front of Littlefield Fountain Saturday night to light the tower orange in commemoration of the men’s golf team winning the NCAA Men’s Golf Championship for the first time since back-to-back victories in 1971 and 1972.

“It’s great, it’s what we’ve worked on since we started playing golf this year, and it’s pretty exciting. It’s not only for us, it’s for these people right here — we’re pretty blessed to have the people around us and we thank them for the support,” junior Julio Vegas said.

“It’s something that words cannot describe,” junior Cody Gribble said. “We did it, we finally did it! After 40 years the satisfaction is above and beyond.”

The tower was lit in the traditional, proud Texas burnt orange with the number one at the heart of the tower on all four sides. This is tradition whenever an athletic team wins a national championship. Aside from Saturday, the last time the tower commemorated a sports victory was 2010, when the Texas men’s swimming and diving team won the championship.

“It hasn’t sunk in yet. It’s something that’s gonna stay with us for the rest of our lives. It’s an amazing feeling — the adrenaline rushing when we knew it was going to be a reality when Dylan made that putt,” freshman Jordan Speith said.

“It’s hard to put into words,” head coach John Fields said. “Every one of us is extremely appreciative and proud to be from Texas and represent Texas. It’s wonderful, it’s what you dream of — it’s absolutely wonderful.”

The Longhorns saw themselves down 2-0 after the first two pairings before rallying to win three straight matches in the championship round of the NCAA tournament.

Texas’ first win came from Gribble, who sank a birdie on 17 over Alabama junior Scott Strohmeyer.

A match-up between two of the best amateurs nationwide, Speith and Alabama freshman Justin Thomas followed Gribble’s win, with Speith leading the whole day and taking a 3-hole lead by 15. This tied the match at 2-2 before heading to the final pairing between Texas senior All-American Dylan Frittelli and Alabama sophomore Corey Whitsett.

The match was tied after 17, and with Whitsett in position for a possible bogey on the 18th hole, Frittelli only need a two-putt to win.

Instead, he sank a stunning 30-foot putt to erase all hope the Crimson Tide had of winning, giving Texas its first men’s golf championship in 40 years.

“It was a dream come true,” Frittelli said Saturday evening after the tower was lit. “You couldn’t have scripted it any better. I made a 30-footer on the final green, and was engulfed by my teammates. It was an amazing occurrence and something that I will cherish for the rest of my life.”

Photo Credit: The Associated Press

It took three years, but Texas finally avenged its 2010 National Title loss in football to the Alabama Crimson Tide. Well, almost.

Albeit in a different sport, men’s golf defeated the Tide for its third national title and the first since the 1971-1972 back to back titles. 

“I heard from Mack Brown last night. He didn’t win his last one against Alabama, so he told us to go win today,” said head coach John Fields. 

Unlike the football game three years ago, the match came down to the wire, with the Longhorns and Tide both vying for the National Title until the 18th hole of the Sunday’s match-play championship. The first match to finalize came down to an eagle and birdie on the 17th and 18th holes by Alabama sophomore Bobby Wyatt to defeat Texas sophomore Toni Hakula. Next, Alabama senior Hunter Hamrick defeated Texas junior Julio Vegas in  just 13 holes in the most lopsided match on the day. 

That’s when Texas junior Cody Gribble finished off his match against Scott Strohmeyer by a 6&5 margin. Gribble led Strohmeyer by six holes with just five holes left in the round, making a comeback from the Alabama junior out of the question. Followed by the matchup between two of golf’s best amateur players, Texas freshman Jordan Spieth and Alabama freshman Justin Thomas squared off, with Spieth emerging victorious with a 3&2 win.

It all came down to the pairing of Alabama’s Cory Whitsett and Texas senior Dylan Frittelli. Frittelli birdied the 17th hole to tie up the final at 2 games apiece, and sent fans in droves to the all-deciding 18th hole. On 18, Whisett came bogeyed, leaving Frittelli needing only a two putt to clinch the team title. Instead, the senior rattled home a 30 foot putt from the edge of the green for the win and the national championship. 

“I was sure he was going to make the chip. To get my mind right I had to pretend it was going in. I wanted to make the putt no matter what,” said Frittelli. “When I saw him miss, it made it a little easier on me, but I still wanted to put it in.” 

Texas took home its 46th all-time NCAA Championship team title and 50th overall National Championship. It is the first title since Men’s Swimming and Diving were crowned NCAA Champions in the spring of 2010. 

“A lot is expected of us at Texas,” said Spieth. “When you commit to play any sport at Texas, you are committing to do everything you can to win a championship.”

Men's Golf

A final round rally was not enough to propel the Longhorns to a first place finish on Sunday. Texas finished in second place at the Big 12 Conference Championship tournament.

No. 1 Texas, which entered the last day nine shots back of No. 15 Texas A&M, led the field with a 3-over-291 on the last day of the tournament, but an overall score of 16-over-1168 left the Longhorns in second place, three shots behind the event-winning Aggies.

The Longhorns made a strong push on the back nine of the final round, but they struggled on the final hole and allowed the Aggies to claim victory.

The Longhorns entered the championship as the favorite among the 10-team field. Texas, however, was not able to overcome the consistency of the Aggies, who recorded scores between 286 and 297 in each of the four rounds.

The Longhorns had three players finish in the top-10 over the weekend, with senior Dylan Frittelli leading the way with an even score of 288, which was good for a tie for third place overall among individuals. Frittelli held a three-stroke lead through 15 holes before double-bogeying the 16th hole and triple-bogeying the final hole.

Freshman Jordan Spieth was right behind Frittelli with a 1-over-289, good for fifth place and junior Julio Vegas finished eighth by shooting a 5-over 293.

Senior Alex Moon shot a 13-over-301 to finish tied for 20th, and sophomore Toni Hakula tied for 33rd after recording a score of 19-over-307.

Following the tournament, Texas head coach John Fields was proud of the effort of his players but admitted that their struggles at the end would not sit well with the team.

“The character of this Texas team showed, for sure,” Fields said. “They came back each of the last three days. We have a lot to build on from that. This is going to sting for a while, maybe a year, but we’ll come back. Three shots short stings really bad.”

Frittelli seconded these sentiments, and he said that Fields remained positive and supportive of the Texas golfers following the tournament.

“He told us to pick our heads up,” Frittelli said. “We played a great tournament and did a lot of things well this week. We came from quite a few shots down to take the lead today, and we did a lot of great things out there.”

Despite finishing better than eight of the 10 teams that competed in the Big 12 Conference championship, the Longhorns golfers were not satisfied with their inability to claim the top spot. Spieth believed that they failed to reach their potential in the tournament and that it cost them the conference title.

“We were all real excited to come here, but we didn’t play well,” Spieth said. “We didn’t play to our capability. We knew we were the favorites, everyone else knew we were the favorites, and we didn’t let that get to us. We dug ourselves a hole at beginning and had to dig ourselves out the rest of the weekend.”

Printed on Monday, April 30, 2012 as: UT unable to surpass Aggies at conference championship

Senior Dylan Frittelli holds the record for individual awards won in the Big 12 conference. Frittelli is currently ranked No. 1 in the nation.

Photo Credit: Derek Stout | Daily Texan Staff

Domination of his competitors is nothing new for senior golfer Dylan Frittelli. Growing up in South Africa, he quickly climbed the rankings of the top individual golfers in the nation.

From age 16 to 18, Frittelli was the No. 1 junior golfer in South Africa, and he was the top amateur golfer in the country from age 17 to 18. In 2007, he won the Callaway Junior World Championship at Torrey Pines in San Diego, and the next year he won the 2008 South African Boys’ Championship.

This high level of success did not cease for Frittelli once he joined the Longhorns. As a freshman, he was able to record his first career collegiate victory in the Puerto Rico Classic, and he tallied the best score among Longhorns in the Big 12 Championships.

He improved as a sophomore in 2010, when he recorded eight top-10 finishes, led the team in stroke average and was named Big 12 Conference Player of the Year. In addition to conference accolades, Frittelli received PING All-American (third team) and Golfweek All-American (third team) honors in just his second season at Texas.

Last season, he once again led the team in stroke average and received All-Big 12 and PING All-American (third team) honors for a consecutive year.

However, Frittelli may be having his best season to date as a senior in 2011-12, as no golfer has played a bigger role in the Longhorns’ No. 1 NCAA ranking.

The recently named Ben Hogan Award semifinalist and No. 1 player in the nation has been the Longhorns’ most consistent player. He has finished among the top two individual golfers in five tournaments this season, including a first-place finish in the Morris Williams Intercollegiate in Austin.

While his strong scores have helped the Longhorns on the scorecard, Frittelli’s biggest contribution may be the calming presence he brings with his consistency.

“I think [my consistency] has just settled down the other players,” Frittelli said. “If they know I’ll finish in the top 10, they don’t have to worry as much about playing well and can focus [on themselves].”

Head coach John Fields has also been impressed with Frittelli’s leadership, and he believes the senior has been a strong example for his teammates this season.

“He’s a real stabilizing force because he’s mature, experienced and extremely competitive,” Fields said. “He takes care of business, works diligently in school and golf and stays away from distractions. He’s a fine leader.”

Likewise, the rest of the Texas golfers have nothing but respect for Frittelli. Junior Cody Gribble, who is Frittelli’s roommate on road trips, considers the senior as a role model on the team for his actions on and off the golf course.

“He’s been playing extremely well, and off the course everyone looks up to him,” Gribble said. “Over the last couple of years he’s come into his own, and all of us have a lot of respect.”

The Longhorns have maintained the top ranking in collegiate golf for much of the season, and that is due in large part to the contributions of Frittelli. Texas is in the best position to win the national championship this year as it has been in the senior’s tenure, and he has stepped up as a leader for the Longhorns.

Following this season, Frittelli will turn his attention to the PGA Tour, where he will look to start a career in golf and continue his success at the highest level.

“I’ll be turning pro sometime later this year, go to Tour school and by August I hope to be pro,” Frittelli said. “Traveling around playing golf is my dream job.”


 

Men's Golf

For the second consecutive week, the Texas Longhorns men’s golf team finished a tournament atop the leaderboard, as it completed a 16-stroke victory at the Jack Nicklaus Invitational in Dublin, Ohio, on Tuesday.

No. 3 Texas, entered the final round on Tuesday morning just one shot behind Ohio State for first place among the 12-team field. The Longhorns recorded an impressive combined score of 287 in the final round to claim a commanding event victory. They finished the two-day event with an overall score of 862 (-2), with the Buckeyes (878, +14) and Illinois (884, +20) finishing second and third, respectively.

Four of the five Longhorns golfers placed in the top 10 in individual scoring. Freshman Jordan Spieth, who shot a six shot under par 66 in the second round, tied for second overall with a cumulative score of 211 (-5) for the tournament. Only Thomas Pieters of Illinois, who recorded a 137 (-7), finished the tournament with a lower score.

Senior Dylan Frittelli, who was named Big 12 Conference Golfer of the Month for September, finished seventh overall with a score of 216 (E). Frittelli had placed second in each of the Longhorns’ first two tournaments of 2011, and his consistency so far this season has impressed Texas head coach John Fields.

“Dylan set some major goals for himself this fall and has played extremely well against tough fields and challenging courses,” Fields said. “The season’s not over, and neither are the goals he wants to accomplish. He’s off to an incredible start this year.”

In addition to Spieth and Frittelli, junior Julio Vegas finished eighth in the tournament with a score of 217 (+1), and sophomore Toni Hakula placed ninth with a 218 (+2). Senior Adam Wennerstrom was the only Longhorn to finish outside of the top 10, finishing 56th in the tournament with a score of 242 (+26).

With the victory, the Longhorns, who also finished in first place last week at the Jerry Pate Intercollegiate, won a tournament in back-to-back weeks for the first time since 2006. Following the tournament win, Fields was pleased with the performance of golfers.

“I’m really happy with our guys. We overcame some obstacles out here with Cody Gribble sustaining an injury before we began and Toni Hakula replacing him [in the lineup] to a slow start in the first round,” Fields said.

“However, we came back with a really solid second round — shooting a 12-under on Muirfield is an exceptional feat. Coming into the final round, against what was really another outstanding field, we kept our focus. For us to win tournaments named after legends like Jerry Pate and Jack Nicklaus is really special for this golf team.”

Texas will look to win its third consecutive tournament when it travels to Orlando for the Isleworth Collegiate Invitational from Oct. 23-25.
 

Men's Golf

Coming off a fifth place finish in their first tournament of the year, the Texas Longhorns men’s golf team is headed to Vestavia Hills, Alabama to take part in the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate on Oct. 3-4.

The tournament is a two-day event held by University of Alabama that will host to a 12-team field. Texas, No. 7 in this week’s GolfWorld/Nike poll, will send a strong team of five golfers to Alabama with its eyes on a first place finish.

The Longhorns will be led by senior Dylan Frittelli, who finished second among all competitors in Texas’ first tournament at Olympia Fields Country Club in Chicago last month. In 2009 at the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate, Frittelli recorded a score of 68 to help the Longhorns place second in the tournament.

In addition to Frittelli, junior Cody Gribble, who recorded a 66 in 2009 in this tournament, will be returning to Alabama for the event. Freshman standout Jordan Spieth will compete in his first tournament of the year for the Longhorns this week as well, and junior Julio Vegas and sophomore Toni Hakula round out the Texas lineup.

After dropping two spots in the GolfWorld/Nike poll following their fifth place finish in the season-opening tournament, the Longhorns will look to climb back towards the top spot with a solid showing this week in Alabama.

Printed on October 4, 2011, as: Texas builds off season opening tourney, looks to improve rank