AUBURN, Wash. -- The top-seeded UCLA men's golf team extended its lead and junior John Merrick set course record at the NCAA West Regional hosted by the University of Washington at Washington National Golf Course in Auburn, Wash.
The Bruins stretched their lead to nine strokes with an 8-under par round of 280 Friday for a 36-hole total of 571, 5-under par. Arizona is second at 4-over par 580, followed by New Mexico at 583. UNLV is fourth at 585 and Georgia is fifth at 586.
The top 10 teams following Saturday's final round will advance to the NCAA Championships, May 28-31, at Karsten Creek Golf Course in Stillwater, OK.
Junior John Merrick led the charge for the Bruins on Friday by firing a course record, 5-under par 67. Merrick is tied for third place at 2-under par 142 with teammate Steve Conway, who posted a score of 71. Junior Travis Johnson posted an even par 72 and is tied for sixth at 143, 1-under par. Roy Moon is tied for 12th at 1-over par 145 after posting a score of 71 and sophomore John Poucher also carded a 71 and is tied for 19th at 146.
Michael Letzig of New Mexico leads the field at 7-under par 137 after posting a 4-under par score of 68 in the second round. Arizona's Chris Nallen is second at 139 after carding a 3-under par 69. David Denham is tied for third with Conway and Merrick at 142.