Courtesy of Illinois' Athletics
What the team competition at the inaugural Folds of Honor Collegiate lacked in drama, the race for medalist honors more than made up for on Wednesday at American Dunes Golf Club in Grand Haven, Mich.
After opening an 11-stroke lead after a lights-out round on Tuesday, eighth-ranked Illinois shot a final round of 3-under 285 to cruise to a 15-shot lead over Arizona, which finished second at 5-over. Florida State was a distant third at 10-over 874.
For all intents and purposes, the Illini put the wraps on this tournament with its 13-under round on Tuesday, as fifth-year seniors Adrien Dumont de Chassart and Tommy Kuhl, and junior Piercen Hunt all recorded rounds of 3-under 69 to lead the Illini to a 15-shot improvement over Monday's opener.
Mike Small's team strolled to the winner's circle on Wednesday with a 3-under round fueled by a 68 by Jackson Buchanan, who tied for third among the individuals with teammate Adrien Dumont de Chassart at 4-under par. Kuhl also secured a top-10, tying for fifth at 3-under 213, his seventh top-5 finish of his collegiate career
Jonathan Yaun (L)
"It was a solid tournament," said Small, who recorded his 79th team tournament title at the helm of the Illini program. "We played Illinois golf most of the week, especially the last two rounds. We tidied things up around the greens.
"The conditions were tough, but we got off to a good start today. When you have a lead in team golf going into the last round, you have to really push out and hold your lead, and not allow the momentum to go sideways on you. We got off to a good start today, got a lead, and never relinquished it. That's strong golf, and that's what I'm proud of."
Sitting at 6-under with two holes to play, it looked like Dumont de Chassart was going to give the Illini a title sweep, however, the Belgian was doomed by a bogey-bogey finish to slip back to 4-under.
Liberty's Jonathan Yaun's path to medalist honors was not an easy one. He was seemingly on cruise control at 7-under but three consecutive birdies on his 14-16th holes of the day dropped him back to 4-under. However, a birdie on his 17th, the par-4 8th, got him to the clubhouse at 5-under.
Maximillian Steinlecher of North Carolina State birdied his final hole to get to 5-under which turned out to be the magic number to get into a playoff.
On the second playoff hole, Yaun chipped in from the back of the green for a birdie to claim the title at one time that looked like no one wanted.
“I’ve been waiting a long time for a win, and through all of the ups and downs I’ve had in my game, for it to happen at a place like this and in these types of conditions makes it probably the biggest win of my career so far,” said Yaun. “To know that I can play in a playoff and compete against the best players in the world means everything.”
Arizona’s Chase Sienkiewicz eagled the 519-yard 2nd hole and birdied five of his final 13 holes to card a five-under final round and finish T8. The 2022 Second Team All-PAC-12 member’s 67 is a course record.
ABOUT THE Folds of Honor Collegiate
54-hole college tournament with team (best four scores
out of five players each day) and individual
competitions. Proceeds benefit the Folds of Honor and
the GCAA Presidential Scholarship Fund.
View Complete Tournament Information