April 27, 2018
Men's Golf at 2018 SEC Championship
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- South Carolina shot 290 (+10) in the final round of stroke play on Friday at the 2018 SEC Championship to finish 13th. The Gamecocks sat four shots back of the match play cutline (eighth place) heading into today, but were unable to get the low final round they needed to climb up the leaderboard.
Junior Scott Stevens paced Carolina with a 1-over 71. The Chattanooga, Tenn., native finished T-30th at 5-over. After a tough bogey on his opening hole, the 2017 All-SEC selection shot even par the rest of the way with a pair of birdies. One errant shot led to a double bogey on hole four, his only number worse than par over his final 17 holes.
Senior Keenan Huskey (51st, +10) and freshman Andrew Spiegler each carded 2-over 72s on Friday at Sea Island Club. After a 2-over start through three holes, Huskey shot even par the rest of the way. He was bogey free on his back nine, which was the front side of the course. The Greenville, S.C., native hit the ball well in the final two rounds, but simply couldn't roll in the birdie putts. Spiegler was 3-over through five holes and shot 1-under coming into the clubhouse with red numbers on the course's two par-5s.
Senior Ben Dietrich made the turn at even par, but shot 5-over on his back nine. He got a stroke back on the par-5 seventh hole after a tap in birdie but flied the ball long on his approach on the final hole, carding a double to end his round. He finished T-36th at 7-over for the tournament alongside Spiegler. Junior Will Miles couldn't get it going Friday, shooting 78 (+8) in the final round to finish T-54th (+12).
Scoring conditions were tough again for the final round of stroke play, with wind and difficult pins close to the edges of the greens. LSU, the leaders after the second round, earned the No. 1 seed for the SEC Match Play Quarterfinals with a final round 277 (-3). The Tigers finished stroke play with a three-day total of 834 (-6). Only four teams in the field shot under par third rounds Friday. Florida shot the round of the tournament with an 8-under 272. The Gators Andy Zhang, a sophomore, took home individual medalist honors at 5-under par after defeating Cecil Wegner of Ole Miss in a playoff. Wegner, a freshman, had the individual lead after Thursday's second round.
QUOTING COACH Bill McDonald
"It was a disappointing way to finish today after seeing so many positive signs all week. We were in position to make match play, but it was sloppy and tight looking golf overall from what I observed. I think you can sum up today, and most of our spring season, as below our expectations as a program and very disappointing. There's a big difference between saying you're confident and truly believing it. This team needs to figure that piece out for us to have success in the postseason."
ROUND CHANGER Scott Stevens
Stevens posted the round of the day for the Gamecocks for the second consecutive round with his 1-over 71. After seven bogeys in his first round on Wednesday, the 2017 PING All-Southesast Region selection had just five over his final 36 holes of the championship.
The Gamecocks will await their fate for NCAA Regionals, which are set for May 14-16 at six different sites across the country. Regional fields will be announced live on the NCAA Men's Golf Selection show on the Golf Channel at 5:30 p.m. ET on May 2. The top-five teams at every location advance to the 2018 NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championship May 25-30 at Karsten Creek in Stillwater, Okla.
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