Trent wins Southern Highlands playoff; Oklahoma top team
Jack Trent (left) wins the Southern Highlands (UNLV Athletics photo)
Jack Trent (left) wins the Southern Highlands (UNLV Athletics photo)

College golf is primarily a team sport, but in the final minutes of the Southern Highlands Collegiate, the individual race overshadowed the team one.

A transplanted Las Vegas local went home with the win, and an invitation to next fall’s Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. It is Las Vegas' hometown PGA Tour event, and UNLV’s Jack Trent couldn’t be a better representative of college golf to play it.

After going head to head with Texas wonder-freshman Cole Hammer, Trent deserves it.

Trent leaked a little oil coming in, making a big putt for bogey at No. 17 and then a par at 18 to finish at 10 under for the week. Hammer reached that number with birdies on his final three holes. That also brought Texas up the leaderboard, threatening Oklahoma’s run at the team title.

As Hammer was charging, Trent was watching nearby with a bag of Doritos and a ham sandwich, which seemed like exactly what he needed for a second wind. When the playoff began at No. 18, both started with a bogey. The second time down, Hammer missed a foot-and-a-half birdie putt for the win and the two played the hole a third time. Trent capitalized then with a birdie. This is the Australian’s first career college title.

“I’m sure my dad is over the moon right now,” Trent said of his father watching back home. “I haven’t seen him in awhile – I haven’t seen him since August. I’ll give him a facetime later tonight. I know my mom is crying her eyes out.

"Working hard does pay off.”

Trent ended 2018 with a win at the Southern Nevada Championship. He won two Nevada High School state titles after moving from Brisbane to Las Vegas.

As for Hammer, a final-round 8-under 64 at Southern Highlands helped his Longhorns move two spots up the board and close in on Oklahoma. But when Sooner frontman Quade Cummins putted out for birdie on the 18th – his second birdie of the day to go along with 16 pars – Oklahoma had the title.

“It’s never easy out here,” Oklahoma head coach Ryan Hybl said on camera at the end of a round live-streamed on Golfweek.com. “We’ve done a great job all year long. These guys are gritty and they’re fighting the whole time. We love this golf course. You have to execute and we did it all week long.”

Oklahoma, No. 6 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings, started the day in third, but moved up two spots with its 6-under 282. Only Texas, with 9-under 279, outscored the Sooners in the final round. Oklahoma won with a 14-under total, while Texas was one shot off that pace.

Stanford, which started the day in second, dropped to 10 under for the week and was solo third.

Results: Southern Highlands Collegiate
1AustraliaJack TrentAustralia80067-68-71=206
2TXCole HammerHouston, TX50074-68-64=206
3NYBrandon WuScarsdale, NY40070-68-70=208
T4CACollin MorikawaLa Cañada Flintridge, CA40071-69-69=209
T4TXParker CoodyPlano, TX40072-66-71=209

View full results for Southern Highlands Collegiate

ABOUT THE Southern Highlands Collegiate

54 hole men's college tournament hosted by UNLV. Team (best four scores of five players each day) and individual competitions.

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