Duke celebrates its eighth ACC title
(Duke Athletics Photo)
CLINTON, SC (April 22, 2017) - With storms expected on Sunday the ACC Men's Golf Championship wrapped up on Saturday with a 36-hole final day that saw Duke capture the title. The victory is the Blue Devils eighth conference title in program history and first since 2013.
Ranked 22nd in the country, Duke finished 14-under and 12 shots in front of runner-up No. 14 Clemson. Behind the 2-under Tigers came No. 10 Wake Forest at 3-over in third place, Florida State was fourth at 4-over while NC State rounded out the top-five with a 9-over tally.
“It’s a thrill to be able to take this trophy back to Durham," said Duke head coach Jamie Green. "It makes it that much more special, because the league is so strong top to bottom. I had people come up to me throughout the tournament commenting on how well our guys handled their emotions. To be able to produce for three rounds the way they did, it’s a joy to watch them bask in it and be able to savor the accomplishment of taking home the ACC trophy.”
Duke was led to the title this weekend at Musgrove Mill Golf Course thanks to a team wide effort that saw all five players finish inside the top-15.
The low Blue Devil was Alex Smalley who turned in a 4-under tied for fifth showing. Smalley overcame a double-bogey on the 2nd hole to shoot a 2-under 70 in the final round. Ultimately Smalley was one of three players to finish a shot out of a playoff for medalist honors.
Also in the top-15 for Duke were Jake Shuman (T8; -2), Alexander Matlari (T10; -1), Matt Oshrine (T10; -1) and Chandler Eaton (14th; E).
Duke set the tone for their tournament on Friday with an 11-under first round showing.
“It was one of those things where they were so dialed in,” Green said of his teams mindset. “There might have been a little awareness of where the other teams were, but they were taking care of their own business and executing their game plan.”
The medalist race was full of drama and in the end Virginia's Jimmy Stanger was able to claim victory by surviving a four-way playoff.
Stanger won the playoff with a birdie on the first extra hole, the 18th, after finishing regulation 5-under.
An All-ACC performer last season, Stanger needed a birdie on the 9th hole, his final of the day, just to reach the playoff. Stanger carded rounds of 70-70-71 throughout the tournament.
In the final round Stanger overcame two bogeys and a double-bogey with four birdies and an eagle on the par-4 14th.
In the playoff Stanger was able to defeat Ben Griffin (North Carolina), Paul McBride (Wake Forest) and Bryson Nimmer (Clemson) all of whom shared second at 5-under.
Will Zalatoris (Wake Forest), Stephen Franken (NC State) and Smalley ended up in a tie for fifth at 4-under.
-Duke athletics contributed to this story
ABOUT THE ACC Championship
54 hole men's collegiate championship of the
Atlantic Coast Conference. Team (best four scores out
of five players each round) and individual competitions.
View Complete Tournament Information