The USC and Coastal Carolina men’s golf teams are moving on to the NCAA Golf Championships later this month in Atlanta, but Clemson failed to qualify. USC finished tied for second at its regional in Columbus, OH and Coastal came came in fifth in the regional in Baton Rouge, LA. The top five teams in each regional advanced to the Championships.
The Gamecocks had a final round 288 (+4) to wrap up the week in a tie with Auburn with a total of 872 (+20), earning their first championship trip since 2009 and the program’s 17th all-time. Carolina fell two strokes shy of regional champion New Mexico. The top-seeded Lobos finished first with a total of 870 (+18). This year’s NCAA Championship will be held May 28 through June 2 at the Capital City Club in Atlanta, Ga.
“What a great week for our program,” South Carolina head coach Bill McDonald said. “The guys really showed some strong character today and played a very good round under extreme pressure. Matt Nesmith’s round was incredible, and Dykes Harbin showed how great a leader he is with his play. Now on to Atlanta!”
NeSmith, the SEC Freshman of the Year, made a charge up the leaderboard to lead the way on Saturday. The North Augusta, S.C., native fired a 3-under 68 to climb 14 spots to finish in a tie for second with a total of 214 (+1). NeSmith now has seven top-10 finishes on the season, which moves him into a tie with Eirik Johansen, Kyle Thompson and David Seawell for the second most in a single season in school history. He trails only Fred Wadsworth, who recorded nine top-10 finishes in the 1983-84 season. New Mexico’s James Erkenbeck won medalist honors with a total of 210 (-3).
Freshman Will Starke also played a key role in getting the Gamecocks to Atlanta as he finished in a tie for ninth with a total of 217 (+4). He posted a final-round 76 (+5) that included one birdie, four bogeys and a double bogey.
Harbin and sophomore Caleb Sturgeon saved their best round of the week for last as they both carded a 1-over 72 on Saturday. Harbin finished the tournament in a tie for 43rd with a total of 225 (+12), while Sturgeon tied for 25th with a total of 222 (+9).
Sophomore Sean Kelly turned in a final-round 77 (+6) to conclude the event in a tie for 48th with a total of 226 (+13). Kelly recorded one birdie, five bogeys and a double bogey on the afternoon.
UNLV claimed fourth place with a total of 878 (+26), and Texas Tech took fifth with a total of 879 (+27) to join the Gamecocks, New Mexico and Auburn in advancing to the NCAA Championship.
Story by USC Sports Information
The Coastal Carolina men’s golf team shot a 9-over par 297 in the final round of the NCAA Baton Rouge Regional to place fifth place and advance to the NCAA Championships, May 28-June 2 at The Capital City Club, Crabapple Course in Atlanta.
This will mark Coastal’s first team appearance at the NCAA Championship since finishing fifth at the 2007 Championship. However, this will mark the second appearance at the final for CCU senior Sebastian Soderberg, who qualified as an individual in 2011. Peter Valasek paced the Chants in the final round, shooting a career-best 69 including a birdie on the final hole.
Story by Coastal Carolina Sports Information
Sophomore Billy Kennerly established a significant school record, but the Clemson golf team failed to advance to the NCAA Championship tournament after a tie for 12th place team finish at the NCAA Regional at Karsten Golf Club in Tempe, Arizona. Clemson showed improvement Saturday with a five over par score of 285, better than five other schools, including ninth ranked Duke, but it was not enough to advance.
The Tigers young squad that started three freshmen at the NCAA Regional for just the fifth time in history, finished with a team score of 19 over par, 559. UCLA won the tournament and will join Central Florida, Georgia, Arizona State and Texas A&M as national tournament qualifiers.
Kennerly finished with a one under par 69 on Saturday after an opening round 68 and second round 69 for a 206 total. Combined with his final two rounds at the ACC Tournament he finishes the year with five consecutive rounds in the 60s, a school record. Many players had scored in the 60s four consecutive rounds, including Corbin Mills last year, but never five in a row.
Kennerly also became the first Clemson golfer since All-American D.J. Trahan to post three straight under par rounds in the same NCAA Regional. Trahan accomplished the feat in 2002 when won the NCAA Regional at Settindown Creek in Roswell, GA. Kennerly’s 206 total was also the lowest on record at a regional for a Clemson golfer. It was played on a par 70 course.
Crawford Reeves, playing in his 115th and final round as a Clemson golfer, shot a 71. He had three bogeys and two birdies in recording his best round of the three days in Arizona. He finished his career with 15 eagles, second on the Clemson all-time list.
Cody Proveaux also had a one over par 71 in the final round and finished in 41st place with a 215 score for the 54 holes. He made a pair of birdies on the front side to get to even par, but made a bogey on the last hole.
Stephen Behr shot a four over par 74 and Miller Capps was the on-counter with a 76 on Saturday.
Story by Clemson Sports Information