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Carmel Cup at Pebble Beach: Oklahoma holds on for 2-shot win
Oklahoma men's golf won the Carmel Cup on Sept. 2 (OU Athletics photo)
Oklahoma men's golf won the Carmel Cup on Sept. 2 (OU Athletics photo)

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (Sept. 2, 2018) - Oklahoma’s 36-hole cushion came in handy in the final round of the Carmel Cup. The Sooners entered the final round 15 shots ahead of the next-best team, and despite leaking oil Sunday at Pebble Beach Golf Links, still managed to come out on top. Oklahoma had the third-highest round of the day, a 2-under 358 in the play-six-count-five format, but still logged a two-shot victory to start the season.

Scoring was low across the board in the final round of the Carmel Cup, a season-opening college event at the course that hosted the U.S. Amateur just two weeks ago. Six of the eight teams in the field went under par, three of them in the double digits.

Garett Reband led the Sooners, but lost his individual lead. Reband opened with rounds of 64-66, but capped the weekend with 2-under 70. Oklahoma State’s Matthew Wolff leapfrogged him to take the individual title. Wolff used a final-round 68 to reach 17 under for 54 holes, which was one better than Reband.

Georgia’s Trent Phillips, who advanced to the second round of match play at the U.S. Amateur, tied for third with Luis Garza, an Arkansas junior. Both players were 15 under.

Vanderbilt’s Will Gordon, a quarterfinalist at the U.S. Amateur, tied for fifth with Oklahoma’s Riley Casey at 12 under. Mississippi State’s Tanapat Pichaikool was the only other player to go double digits under par. He was seventh at 10 under.

Georgia and Oklahoma State tied for the low final-round team score at 15-under 345. Georgia nearly caught Oklahoma with its 44-under total. Oklahoma State was another nine shots back at 35 under.

A year ago, Oklahoma State won this title. The Cowboys, ranked No. 1 in the first Bushnell/Golfweek.com Coaches Poll, were without junior Viktor Hovland this week. Hovland won the U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach two weeks ago, but will represent Norway in the World Amateur Team Championship in Dublin, Ireland, next week.

DAY TWO RECAP

University of Oklahoma junior Garett Reband shot a 6-under 66 to take a one-shot lead into the final round of the Carmel Cup at Pebble Beach Golf Links.

Two weeks after the U.S. Amateur, Pebble Beach is again playing host to an elite field, but scoring is much better this time around. 29 of the 48 players in the field are under par through 36 holes.

Reband, who opened the tournament with a 64 on Friday, is 14 under through two rounds and has sparked the Sooners to a 15-shot team lead with one round to go. He is getting plenty of help from his teammates, though. Every round of the six-man Sooner team (unlike most college events, the Carmel Cup is a best-5-of-6-player format) has been par or better, with four scores in the 60s on Saturday.

Riley Casey, also a junior, was the low man for Oklahoma with a second-round 65, and the Sooners shot 24-under 336 to get to 44 under for two rounds.

The University of Georgia sits 15 shots back in second, led by freshman Trent Phillips, who along with brother Trevor, made match play at the U.S. Amateur two weeks ago. The good vibes continued for Trent, who is third individually after rounds of 68-64, and though Trevor struggled with a 78 on Friday, he rebounded Saturday with a 69 as all six Bulldogs shot 70 or better.

Oklahoma State is in third and clearly misses junior Viktor Hovland, who memorably won the U.S. Amateur but is in Ireland this week, set to represent Norway in the World Amateur Team Championship (Eisenhower Trophy).

The Cowboys steamrolled to a national title last year and are the defending champions this week, but are currently 25 shots behind the leaders. Matthew Wolff, who missed the U.S. Amateur, is trying to make up for it and with rounds of 65-66 sits in solo second individually, just one shot behind Reband.

With Hovland out, the player in the field who made the deepest run in the U.S. Am two weeks ago is Vanderbilt's Will Gordon, who made the quarterfinals. Gordon continues his good play at Pebble Beach with rounds of 68-69 and is tied for seventh.

Mason Overstreet of Arkansas, who made the U.S. Am final 16, is tied for 11th after rounds of 68-70.

The tournament concludes with the final round on Sunday morning.

DAY ONE RECAP

College golf is back and a stacked field has made its way to recent U.S. Amateur host Pebble Beach for the season-opening Carmel Cup. With five ranked teams in the field, including three of the top five teams in the first Bushnell/Golfweek.com Coaches Poll, it was No. 3 Oklahoma taking command after day one.

The 2017 national champions were led to a 20-under first day thanks to the play of Garett Reband. Reband, a junior, turned in a career-best 8-under 64 to lead by one. Reband jumped out to a quick start with a birdie on No. 1 and was 5 under after the first eight holes before bogeying his only hole of the day, the par-4 ninth to turn in 4-under 32.

Unfazed by the dropped shot, Reband rediscovered his groove on the ensuing hole with a 10th-hole birdie before closing the opening 18 holes with three consecutive birdies. The birdie on the famous par-5 18th hole was his ninth of the day to go against just one bogey.

On Friday, Reband wasn't the only Sooner to play lights-out golf. The Oklahoma lineup combined for 29 birdies with Blaine Hale (T2; -7) and Riley Casey (T10; -3) also finishing inside the top 10 following first round play.

Defending champion No. 1 Oklahoma State (-10) is second 10 shots back, Georgia (-8) sits in third, TCU (-6) is fourth while No. 17 Arkansas (-4) is fifth.

The Pokes are playing without recent U.S. Amateur winner Viktor Hovland, who currently is representing Norway in the World Amateur Team Championships in Ireland.

Rounding out of the top five in the individual standings are Matthew Wolff (Oklahoma State) in a tie for second with Hale at 7-under, Markus Braadlie (Texas Tech) in fourth at 6 under while U.S. Amateur quarterfinalist Will Gordon (Vanderbilt), Trent Phillips (Georgia), U.S. Amateur Round of 16 participant Mason Overstreet (Arkansas), Hayden Wood (Oklahoma State) and John Augenstein (Vanderbilt) are sharing fifth at 4 under.

Results: Carmel Cup
1CAMatthew WolffAgoura Hills, CA70065-66-68=199
2SCGarett RebandYork, SC50064-66-70=200
T3SCTrent PhillipsInman, SC40068-64-69=201
T3MexicoLuis GarzaMexico40070-67-64=201
T5NCWill GordonDavidson, NC40068-69-67=204

View full results for Carmel Cup

ABOUT THE Carmel Cup

Started in 2011, the Carmel Cup is a 54-hole men's college event hosted by Vanderbilt University and played at the Number 1 ranked public golf course in the United States, Pebble Beach Golf Links. Its field comprised mostly of top teams from the Big 12 and SEC. There are team (best five scores out of six players each round) and individual competitions.

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