Arkansas Finishes Ninth; Dahl Garners Top 10 S
BY ANDRES FOCIL
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – The final round of the 2004 Southeastern Conference Championships proved to be the best for the No. 20 Razorbacks as they rallied to turn in a low weekend score of 287 for seven over par. With its first and second round scores of 300 (+20) and 296 (+16), respectively, Arkansas finished in ninth place on Sea Island Golf Club’s par 70, 6,885-yard golf course.
“As a whole we played the course well today,” Arkansas head coach Mike Ketcham said. “We got off to a good start, like I talked about yesterday. After the first five holes we were at par as a team. Going into the last three we gave shots away on No. 16, 17 and 18. Unfortunately, it took three rounds for us to get comfortable on this course. We lost our patience the first two rounds and dug ourselves into a hole. The thing I did like was that we got better every round and significantly better this last round.”
Fourth-ranked Georgia held the lead to win the team title over No. 1 Florida by one stroke. The Bulldogs came away with a final score of 843 (+3). Georgia’s Todd Brendon also captured the individual hardware by just one stroke with a three-under-par 207.
For the third-straight year senior Andrew Dahl posted a top-15 performance when he tied for eighth place. Dahl consistently led the team during the three-day tournament and turned in a final round of 71, to go with his 70 and 72 from the first and second rounds. Dahl is only the second Razorback to finish in the top 15 three-consecutive years since UA joined the SEC in 1992. Bud Still accomplished the feat in 1993-96.
“Andrew Dahl had a solid tournament,” Ketcham said. “He has played this course well all three years he has come to compete. Sea Island really fits his game. You have to be very patient in order to succeed. Andrew has been a model of consistency. He works hard at everything he does.”
Each Razorback golfer was able to improve his standing in the third round with much-needed improved performances. Freshman Matt Bortis registered a one-over-par 71 and was two under through the front nine. He first and second round scores of 74 and 76, respectively, placed him in a tie for 31st with a final score of 221 (+11).
Close behind was senior Chad Faucett who fired a 72 (+2) in today’s last round. His play tied him for the 39th spot with a 13-over-par 223. Faucett had put up a 78 and 73 in the first two rounds. Freshman Beau Glover turned in a 74 in the final round to give himself a 227 (+17) and a tie for 48th in the tournament. In the first and second rounds he shot 78 and 75, respectively.
Senior Seth Murphy closed out the weekend on a strong note as he fired a third round score of 73 to tie for 57th with a 236 (+26). In the opening round he carded an 84, but took strokes off his game in the second round with a 79.
“This was a great learning experience for our freshmen,” Ketcham said. “It will help them as we go into regionals and nationals this year and even next year when they’ll be helping lead the team.”
The Hogs will enjoy a few weeks off before they take to the road again for the Perry Maxwell Intercollegiate on May 14-16, in Ardmore, Okla. The NCAA Regional Championships will follow shortly after on May 19-22.
“We’ve got some work to do before we go to the Ardmore Classic in three weeks,” Ketcham said. “Our ultimate goal is to finish in the top 15 at the NCAA Championships.”
Final Team Results:
1. Georgia – 269-291-283=843 (+3)
2. Florida – 283-277-284=844 (+4)
3. Auburn – 281-284-294= 859 (+19)
4. Vanderbilt – 295-288-281=864 (+24)
5. Kentucky – 287-293-286=866 (+26)
6. Tennessee – 283-296-289=868 (+28)
7. South Carolina – 294-281-294=869 (+29)
8. LSU – 298-295-282=875 (+35)
9. Arkansas – 300-296-287=883 (+43)
10. Mississippi State – 297-302-288=887 (+47)
11. Alabama – 280-304-305=889 (+49)
12. Ole Miss – 302-294-306=902 (+62)
Final Individual Results:
1. Brendon Todd, Georgia – 66-72-69=207 (-3)
2. Mark Donnell, Vanderbilt – 70-71-67=208 (-2)
Matt Every, Florida – 72-65-71=208 (-2)
4. Matt Kohn, Kentucky – 71-73-66=210 (E)
5. David Denham, Georgia – 66-75-70=211 (+1)
Alex Hamilton, South Carolina – 71-68-72=211 (+1)
Camilo Villegas, Florida – 70-72-69=211 (+1)
8. Andrew Dahl, Arkansas -70-72-71=213 (+3)
Kevin Kisner, Georgia – 68-73-72=213 (+3)
Luke List, Vanderbilt – 72-72-69=213 (+3)
Andrew Medley, Auburn – 70-70-73=213 (+3)
Clint Provost, Alabama – 65-73-75=213 (+3)
Other Arkansas golfers:
T31. Matt Bortis – 74-76-71=221 (+11)
T39. Chad Faucett – 78-73-72=223 (+13)
T48. Beau Glover – 78-75-74=227 (+17)
T57. Seth Murphy – 84-79-73=236 (+26)
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