Photo courtesy of Texas Tech Athletics
Nothing ever comes easy at the Big 12 Match Play Championship.
Texas Tech and Oklahoma grinded through two days of pool play and semifinal matches on Wednesday morning to earn spots in the championship match and clutch performances down the stretch by Ludvig Aberg, Baard Skogen and Calum Scott lifted the Red Raiders to the title at Houston Oaks.
Four of the six matches reached the 18th hole and heading to the 17th, each team had two points on the board and the remaining two matches were all square.
Wins by Jaxon Dowell and Jason Holbrook gave the 11th-ranked (Golfweek/Sagarin) Sooners an early 2-0 lead, but Jack Wall responded with a 4 and 3 victory over Oklahoma's Patrick Walsh to get Texas Tech on the board.
Then it was nailbiting time for head coaches Greg Sands and Ryan Hybl.
Skogen drew the sixth-ranked Red Raiders even with a 1-up win over Drew Goodman. Skogen was nursing a 1 up lead after 12 holes and Goodman was unable to crack the Norwegian, as the two players halved the last five holes to put a second point on the board for the Red Raiders.
With the match now even, Oklahoma's Jase Summy was 1 up on Aberg through 15, but the senior from Eslov, Sweden rallied to win the last three holes to pull out a 2-up victory, which gave the Red Raiders a 3-2 lead.
With the Red Raiders needing just a half point to clinch the title, all eyes turned to the last match on the course between Scott and Oklahoma's Stephen Campbell. Scott took a 1-up lead with a birdie on the par-3 15th, but the lead was shortlived, as he made a bogey on the following hole enabling Campbell to even the match.
The two players matched pars on the 17th and Scott was able to roll in a clutch par putt on the final hole to deliver the necessary half-point the Red Raiders needed to claim the title.
Texas Tech's path to the championship match was not an easy one, as it Red Raiders drew with Texas to win Pool A outright. The Sooners had an easier time of it in their semifinal match with Oklahoma State, fleecing the Cowboys, 6-0.
It was the second team victory of the fall for the Red Raiders, who also won the Inverness Intercollegiate in late September.View results for Big 12 Match Play Championship
ABOUT THE Big 12 Match Play Championship
College match play tournament, with each team match
consisting of six individual matches. A player match win
is worth 1 point, and a tie is worth 1/2, and the
team is the one with the most points in the six player
matches. Pool play determines the match play final.
View Complete Tournament Information