Men's Golf Heads North for Alister MacKenzie Invite

Riccardo Michelini and the Aztecs are headed north to wine country for the Alister MacKenzie Invitational next week in Sonoma, Calif.

Oct. 12, 2013

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SAN DIEGO - The San Diego State men's golf team will close out its brief fall schedule next week when it competes in the Alister MacKenzie Invitational, Oct. 14-15, at the par-72, 7,103-yard Sonoma Golf Club in Sonoma, Calif.

The first 36 holes of the two-day event will be contested on Monday, beginning with a shotgun start at 8:15 a.m. PT, while final-round action gets underway Tuesday at 8 a.m. PT with tee times off holes 1 and 10. A live scoring link courtesy of Golfstat will be available on

The 16-school field features six teams ranked among the top 60 in the latest Golfstat ratings index, including tournament host and No. 4 California, Arizona State (21), Brigham Young (46), Oregon (54), Oregon State (55) and Minnesota (56). The Aztecs, who find themselves in the 66th position will also lock horns with Mountain West foes Colorado State, Fresno State and San José State, as well as squads from Colorado, Hawai`i, Pepperdine, San Francisco, Santa Clara and UC Davis.

SDSU head coach Ryan Donovan will bring five golfers to the Bay Area, led by junior Xander Schauffele, along with sophomore Riccardo Michelini, freshman Ricky DeSantis and senior Austin Kaiser, while sophomore Kevin Ko rounds out the starting lineup.

Schauffele and DeSantis are tied for the team lead with a 73.33 scoring average and have been the Aztecs' top finishers in their first two tournaments of the season. Schauffele is coming off a fourth-place performance at the University of New Mexico's William H. Tucker Invitational, where he carded a 1-over 217 in his last outing on Sept. 28, while DeSantis posted an identical score to tie for the 15th position at the Kikkor Golf Husky Invitational on Sept. 17, to land in the 15th position.

This year marks the first time the Alister MacKenzie Invitational will be played at Sonoma Golf Club after the previous 11 editions of the tournament were held at Marin County's par-71, 6,759-yard Meadow Club in Fairfax, Calif. SDSU, which is making its sixth overall appearance at the event, took home the team title in 2007 with a collective score of 24-under 828 after vaulting over six teams during a furious final-round rally to finish four strokes ahead of second-place Washington.

The Scarlet and Black also boasted the individual winner in 2010, as Alex Kang shot a 16-under 197 to claim medalist honors by one stroke over teammate Todd Baek and Ben An of California.

At last season's tournament, the Aztecs placed fifth out of 16 schools with a combined score of 2-under 850, while Schauffele was the team's top individual finisher after firing a 9-under 204 to tie for the fifth spot. In addition, Kaiser landed in a tie for 17th at 2-under 211, while Michelini tied for 45th with a 4-over 217.

Cal has captured the Alister MacKenzie Invitational seven times in the event's history, including last year when it shot a 46-under 806 to win by 20 strokes over runner-up San Francisco. The Golden Bears' Brandon Hagy also returns to defend his individual crown after he carded a 15-under 198 to edge USF's Taylor Travis (-12).

Following next week's tournament, San Diego State will have nearly fourth months off before opening its 2014 spring schedule at The Prestige at PGA West, Feb. 17-19, in La Quinta, Calif.

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