Arizona sophomore Trevor Werbylo shot a 10-under 62 in last week’s Arizona NIT golf event at Tucson National, a score that creates pause even on the PGA Tour.
At the UA, it became a singular number. The Salpointe Catholic High School grad was 10 under par in Monday’s afternoon round, becoming the first Arizona golfer in history to shoot 10 under in a round. That’s heady territory and then some.
Ex-Wildcats Robert Gamez (1989), Chris Nallen (2003) and Brian Prouty (2007) all shot 62s, but they were 9- or 8-under scores.
Here’s some perspective: In four decades of PGA Tour events played at Tucson National, the best score was Johnny Miller's 61 in 1975. Those who shot 62 are in a select class: David Duval and Miller. Tom Watson is next at 63.
This wasn’t a case of playing from the front tees, either. Werbylo and the 16 teams in the NIT field played from the back tees. When Werbylo reached the imposing 18th hole on Monday afternoon, he hit a tee shot about 375 yards. He then hit a wedge to within about 7 feet in an attempt for a birdie and an unthinkable 61.
“He is going to be very good,” UA coach Jim Anderson told me. “His demeanor for golf is off the charts.”
Werbylo has golf in his blood. His aunt is Cindy Rarick, the most successful pro golfer in Tucson history; Rarick won five LPGA titles between 1987-91.
After the NIT, Werbylo’s 2018-19 scoring average is 70.33. That’s second in the distinguished history of UA golf. Only Nallen — now the assistant coach at his alma mater — had a better season, at 69.79 in 2003-04. Not even Gamez, the 1989 NCAA golfer of the year, had a better scoring average. He was at 71.02 that year.
Werbylo should be a factor in the Pac-12 championships late next month in Eugene, Oregon, but keep in mind that the Pac-12 has six golfers currently ranked in the top 30 of the Golfstat.com analytics. Werbylo has climbed to No. 35 overall. And he’s just getting started.