Sahith Theegala captures Genesis Open Collegiate Showcase
Sahith Theegala - Genesis Open Photo
Sahith Theegala - Genesis Open Photo

PACIFIC PALISADES, CA (February 13, 2017) -- If you had plans to hangout with Sahith Theegala on Thursday he is going to have to happily cancel them. Why? Well because he has a Thursday Genesis Open tee time.

The Pepperdine sophomore made the turn at Riviera Country Club at 2 under and despite the lead getting as small as one on the back nine Theegala was able to hold on and win the Genesis Open Collegiate Showcase. With the win Theegala, who beat five others, earned himself an exemption into this weeks PGA Tour stop.

"My only goal for the week is to have fun," Theegala told the on-course reporter following his round.

By the time Theegala teed off on the closing hole he had restored his lead to two-strokes and despite bogeying the final hole Theegala had done more then enough throughout his round.

Theegala made national headlines last year by making a run to the U.S. Amateur quarterfinals as the 61-seed. Now six months before the 2017 U.S. Amateur, Theegala will get an extended sneak peak at this years host venue, Riviera Country Club.

Making up the reminder of the collegiate field were Colorado's Jeremy Paul, Kentucky's Tyler (Chip) McDaniel, Texas' Gavin Hall, UCLA's Tyler Collier and Washington's Corey Pereira. The college players were also joined by program alumnus including world No. 6 Jordan Spieth who won the NCAA Team Championship with Texas in 2012, Kentucky alum J.B. Holmes and former UCLA Bruin Kevin Chappell. Each group also included two amateur playing alumni from the school.

During the round the foursomes played a best-ball competition against each other with the winning team earning a $50,000 donation to that schools golf program.

This year that prize went to Pepperdine with Theegala being joined by PGA pro Jeff Gove, Paul Porteous and Matt Stapleton.

Last year Charlie Danielson of Illinois won the Collegiate Showcase with a 3-under 68 before going onto to make the cut. In 2015 at the inaugural event Will Zalatoris of Wake Forest earned the top prize.

-The Genesis Open contributed to this story

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ABOUT THE Genesis Invitational Collegiate Showcase

The Genesis Invitational Collegiate Showcase was founded in 2015. It is a chance for collegiate players to play with PGA Tour alumni from their respective schools. Two simultaneous competitions take place:

In the individual competition, the collegiate players will play their own ball to record an 18-hole score. When the Collegiate Showcase was founded, the winner experienced the excitement of playing in the Genesis Invitational that same week at Riviera. With the status of the Geneisis Invitational changed to "elevated" the showcase changed to awarding a playing spot in the Genesis Scottish Open, a co-sanctioned PGA TOUR & DP World Tour event played in July.

In the team competition, the professional and the two amateurs (playing at a specified percentage of their most current and verified handicap) will team up to play a best ball format (one-ball). The low Professional and Amateurs team will take home the Champions Trophy for their school and a nice check going to their university's golf program.

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