ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Junior Sebastian Cappelen
of the No. 14 University of Arkansas men’s golf team took the 2013 Southeastern Conference Individual title with a final round of four-under par, 66, leading the Razorbacks to a sixth-place finish in the team standings at Seaside Golf Course on St. Simons Island, Ga., on Sunday afternoon.
Cappelen’s victory is just the second by a Razorback in 22 SEC Championship tournaments and the first since Bud Still won the individual title in 1995. On a day when winds were blowing 20-30 miles per hour, Cappelen hit every green, 12 of 14 fairways, and was one of just two players to shoot under par. His final round of 66 matches Arkansas third lowest in school history at an SEC Championship and his 54-hole total of 202 was four strokes better than any other Razorback in 21 previous events.
“I have never seen a player play as well as Sebastian did in all my years of coaching over the final 36 holes,” Arkansas head coach Brad McMakin
said. “To shoot 66 today, in these conditions, is a credit to Sebastian’s ability. His hands are great and he was able to keep the ball from getting caught up in the winds. I am very happy for him and proud of the way this team rebounded after a tough first day.”
Over his final 40 holes of the tournament, Cappelen shot eight-under par without a single bogey. He would walk off the course with a final score of eight-under par around 1:40 p.m. on Sunday and then have to wait nearly two hours for Caleb Sturgeon of South Carolina to finish his round of golf. Sturgeon began the day with a four-stroke lead on the field and was even par and tied with Cappelen through 12 holes on Sunday. A bogey on No. 13 gave Cappelen a one-stroke lead and a triple bogey on No. 16 gave Cappelen the individual title, although no one would know for sure until after Sturgeon finished the round.
Two-under par when he made the turn, Cappelen’s round would continue with six more par putts before he stepped to the tee on the par four, 16th. His drive fell into the middle of the fairway, some 80 yards from the green and he hit a low eight iron to within six feet of the stick for his third birdie of the day. On the par three, 17th, Cappelen’s tee shot landed on the middle of the green, 35-40 feet from the pin, but the Odense, Denmark native’s putt found the center of the cup for back-to-back birdies. He closed the round with par on No. 18.
As a team, Arkansas placed sixth with a team score of 28-over par, just four strokes out of fourth and eight out of third. No. 2 Alabama won the team title with a score of eight-over par and was followed by South Carolina at 10-over. No. 19 Auburn (+20), No. 21 Texas A&M (+24) and No. 25 Mississippi State (+26) rounded out the top five.
Also playing well for the Razorbacks over the final 36 holes of the event was freshman Taylor Moore
who shot two-over par, 72, on Sunday. Moore began his day with six straight pars and sank a birdie on the par five, seventh. He would make the turn at one-under par and stay there through No. 12 before becoming a victim to the high winds that blew in from the ocean side of the course. Back-to-back-to-back bogeys on No. 13, No. 14 and No. 15 ran his score to two-over par, but he closed the round with three pars and played his final 36 holes at two-over par to finish in a tie for 27th individually.
Senior Austin Cook
tied for 31st when he shot five-over par, 75, on the final day. Cook rolled through the first five holes with pars before a bogey on No. 6 was followed by a double bogey on No. 7 and finally a bogey on No. 8. He would settle down on No. 9 with a par and played the final 11 holes at one-over par, including the most difficult holes on the course.
Junior Joe Doramus
rounded out Arkansas’ team score on Sunday when he shot eight-over par, 78. Doramus sank a birdie on No. 1 and was one-over par at the turn, but he opened the back side with three bogeys and hung on to keep the Razorbacks in the hunt for a top five finish. Playing in his first SEC Championship, Doramus posted scores in two rounds that counted toward the Arkansas team effort.
Arkansas’ final player, Thomas Sorensen
struggled with the high winds at times and was unlucky with a couple of other shots on his way to a final round, 80. Eight bogeys and a double over his final 18 holes contributed to his score.
The Razorbacks return to the course, May 16-18, when they host the NCAA Fayetteville Regional at Blessings Golf Course.