LSU used their home course advantage to win the Southeast Regional
BATON ROUGE, LA (May 17, 2017)--Sam Burns and the LSU Tigers completed a wire-to-wire win at the NCAA Southeast Regional at The University Club.
Playing on their home course, the Tigers led throughout, slowly stretching their lead from six after round one, to seven going into the final round, and to the final margin of eight shots after a final-round 294. Luis Gagne was the low scorer for LSU, finishing with a one-under 71.
Duke started the day seven behind and could not close ground, recording a 295 and finishing as the runner-up. Alex Smalley and Chandler Eaton led the Blue Devils, each finishing tied third at even par 216.
LSU's Burns, who entered the tournament #3 in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com World Amateur Rankings, took a five shot lead into the final round on the strength of his opening-round 65. Two birdies on the front nine gave him a seemingly comfortable lead, but he started leaking oil and making bogeys--five in all from the tenth through the sixteenth. In the end, two pars were just enough as Burns won by a single shot over Oregon's Wyndham Clark. The win moved him to #1 in the updated rankings.
Entering the final round, the defending national champion Oregon Ducks were on the bubble for the chance to defend their title at the championship. But a solid three-over 291--the second-low round of the day--lifted them to a third place finish and a return visit to the NCAA's.
As with the other regional sites, the real action centered around the fifth spot and who would advance. The low five teams and the low individual not on a qualifying team qualify for the NCAA Championship, to be held at Rich Harvest Farms in Elk Grove, IL, May 26-31.
Going into the final round, Oregon and Northwestern took a one shot lead over Kentucky for the fifth and final spot into the championship, with Jacksonville another six shots back. Alexander Herrmann of Georgia State had a one-shot lead over Cooper Musselman of Kentucky in the race for the lone individual spot in the championship.
Virginia seemed to have plenty of cushion entering the day, comfortably in the third spot.
But the Cavaliers backed up with a 301--the highest score of any team in the top eight--to give themselves a scare, but in the end they made it through in fourth.
Jacksonville made the biggest move, shooting the low round of the day with a 289 for an 883 total. They were matched at that number by Northwestern (295), who would have qualified easily if they did not have to count a 79 in their team score. Kentucky (295) fell one shot short at 884 which meant that Jacksonville and Northwestern would play off for the final spot.
In the playoff, both teams went two-over on the eighteenth hole, sending the playoff to the par-four tenth. Jacksonville then came up big, with four pars and a birdie for a one-under team score, and when Northwestern made a bogey and then hit a drive out of bounds, it was over and Jacksonville advanced to the championship.
Mason Overstreet of the University of Arkansas claimed the lone individual spot, firing the low round of the day with a 67 that gave him a 218 total to eclipse Tyler Daniel (71) of Kentucky by a single shot.
The folowing teams and individual advanced to the NCAA Championship:
- LSU, Duke, Oregon, Virginia, Jacksonville
- Mason Overstreet, Arkansas
ABOUT THE NCAA Division I Southeast Regional
54 hole men's NCAA Regional from which the
teams advance to the NCAA Championship.
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