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6 years earlier, Sam Bennett bogeyed 3 of his last 4 holes, shot 77 and ended up 2 strokes behind winner Garett Reband at the AJGA Valero Junior Texas Open.

On Wednesday, Bennett, now a junior at Texas A&M, discovered himself in another final-round fight for Reband, a fifth-year senior at Oklahoma– and on the very same course, TPC San Antonio’s Oaks design, where the PGA Trip every year plays the Valero Texas Open.

Bennett began the last round of the Cabo Collegiate 3 shots back of 36-hole leader Vincent Norrman of Florida State and one behind Reband. However a closing 5-under 67, highlighted by 6 birdies in his last 13 holes, sufficed to provide Bennett his very first college win by a shot over Reband, who fired a bogey-free 68 to top his competition.

” When we ended up, Garett came near me and stated, ‘I got you last time, you got me this time,'” stated Bennett, whose 5-under efficiency led the Aggies to a third-place surface behind winner Oklahoma and runner-up Florida State.

Bennett, a hard-nosed kid who didn’t miss out on a competition as a sophomore in spite of breaking his left collarbone in an intramural flag football video game and having surgical treatment, had actually come close to winning a college occasion previously, consisting of at last week’s Border Olympics, where he led after 2 rounds just to follow with a closing 76 and connect for 5th, 3 shots shy of colleague Dan Erickson.

” I choked,” Bennett confessed.

Wednesday’s success removed any bad taste in Bennett’s mouth as the junior beat the other 3 members of the last foursome– Reband, Norrman and Arizona State’s Mason Andersen, who have actually integrated for 11 specific college triumphes– and topped a stacked field that likewise consisted of 5 U.S. Walker Cuppers in Florida State’s John Pak, Texas colleagues Cole Hammer and Pierceson Coody, Oklahoma’s Quade Cummins and Oklahoma State’s Austin Eckroat.

” I have actually constantly understood I might take on the very best in college golf, however I simply never ever did the job,” stated Bennett on the van trip back to College Station, his prize in his lap. “Now, I understand it and I have actually done the job.”

Bennett will be making the drive back to TPC San Antonio in a couple of weeks. An included advantage to winning Wednesday was a sponsor exemption into the Valero Texas Open. The April 1-4 occasion will mark Bennett’s very first PGA Trip start.

Okay for a kid from Madisonville, Texas, a town about 20 miles beyond College Station, where Bennett found out the video game on a rundown nine-hole golf course.

” It’s going to be sweet,” Bennett stated. “I have actually worked my entire life for this and constantly imagined playing in a Trip occasion. Today was quite unique to do the job and liquidate my very first win, however to likewise get an area into the Valero Texas Open, it’s a lot more unique.”

Bennett didn’t need to believe long when inquired about his objectives for next month’s Trip launching.

” Simply going to treat it like any other time I tee it up,” he stated. “Going to attempt and win.”



The champ is here

A number of females’s nationwide title competitors assembled on Columbia Nation Club in Blythewood, S.C., for today’s Gamecock Intercollegiate.

Baylor was gunning for a 6th straight win to remain unbeaten. Wake Forest was fresh off its very first success of the season at Kiawah. Host South Carolina and Ole Miss were coming off their junior varsity titles.

However in the end, it was the ruling NCAA champ entrusting the hardware.

Led by specific champ Eric Shepherd, Duke shot even par in 54 holes to beat Wake Forest by 3 shots on Wednesday. In hard conditions, Shepherd led the field with 14 birdies as the sophomore shot 7 under to likewise win by 3 shots. Freshman Phoebe Brinker connected for 3rd at 2 under for heaven Devils, who ham and egged it well with their other 3 gamers not completing much better than T-40 however each of them publishing a minimum of one rating of 74 or much better.

” It does appear like a while earlier; in truth, it was a while earlier,” Duke head coach Dan Brooks stated of his group still holding the title of safeguarding nationwide champs. “However I do not invest a great deal of time on the past, and you discover that as time goes on, not to think of the past. Truthfully, I have not considered it that much. We have actually carried on. Brand-new individuals, brand-new group, and we’re visiting if we can do it once again this time.”

Just 2 gamers stay from Duke’s 2019 champion team: Gina Kim and Jaravee Boonchant, the latter of whom has yet to tee it up this spring for heaven Devils, who have among the tiniest lineups in college golf with simply 6 gamers. The senior hasn’t played anywhere because last March’s Darius Rucker Intercollegiate since of the COVID-19 pandemic, deciding to play it safe and stay at home in Thailand instead of travel.

Nevertheless, Brooks stated Boonchant just recently felt comfy sufficient to fly back to the U.S. She landed in Durham, North Carolina, on Tuesday night. Part of Boonchant’s choice most likely is because of Duke’s rigid coronavirus policies, that include day-to-day screening of professional athletes. Even while taking a trip to occasions, Duke’s golf enthusiasts should evaluate. A carrier service gets the tests every day and provides them back to school for outcomes.

” It’s rather something,” Brooks stated. “Our university and department have actually done an outstanding task.”

Duke has simply 3 occasions left on its spring schedule prior to the ACC Champion, consisting of just one full-field, stroke-play occasion, the Valspar Augusta Invitational, which starts March 13 in Augusta, Georgia. It’s very little time for Boonchant to get rid of the rust, however with Shepherd beginning to understand her capacity (she’s gone 3rd, win to open the spring), Brinker getting better after a hard college launching and Kim taking pleasure in a strong winter season highlighted by her win at Harder Hall, Brooks is positive his group suffices to beat anybody despite the 5 gamers he has out there. Heaven Devils showed his point Wednesday.

” We have some actually gifted kids and some excellent character, which consists of all 6 of them,” Brooks stated, “so if among them isn’t there, we still have a truly excellent group.”

Assistance from grandpa fueling Illinois’ Feagles

D2 in name just

Forty-one females’s groups teed it up Sunday-Tuesday in the Kiawah Island Classic. Forty of those groups are Department I. Among them is not.

The group that is not– Division-II Dallas Baptist– won. Go figure.

The Patriots, who are the top-ranked group in the WGCA’s D-II coaches’ survey, shot 1 over in 54 holes around both Oak Point and Cougar Indicate win by 27 shots over runner-up College of Charleston. 3 Dallas Baptist gamers ended up T-5 or much better, consisting of medalist Faith DeLaGarza, who bested the field by 2 chance ats 3 under.

” When you tee it up, you do not get additional shots for being a big-time hire or being at a D1 or whatever, you still need to get it in the hole,” Patriots head coach Kenny Trapp informed Golfweek “As years have actually gone on, particularly in the last 5 years or two, it’s getting more detailed and more detailed. There’s so numerous gamers now, the video game has actually simply broadened a lot that they do not have a great deal of locations to go and individuals wish to win. Individuals wish to have a possibility to win a nationwide title. There’s constantly going to be, now, the leading 5 or 10 in D-II are going to remain in that leading 100 and a number of us are leading 50 even because D-I arena.”

Taking shape

Less than 3 months after the 2020 Arnold Palmer Cup, the lineups for this year’s match-play occasion are starting to take shape.

On Wednesday at Bay Hill, 12 gamers were revealed as committee choices. Submitting the very first 6 areas on the U.S. group were Florida’s Ricky Castillo, Texas’ Pierceson Coody, Georgia’s Trent Phillips, Wake Forest’s Rachel Kuehn, USC’s Allisen Corpuz and Arkansas’ Brooke Matthews. The 6 global choices were Wake Forest’s Alex Fitzpatrick, Arizona State’s David Puig, Florida’s Yuxin Lin, South Carolina’s Pauline Roussin-Bouchard, LSU’s Ingrid Lindblad and Florida State’s Beatrice Wallin.

The remainder of the 2 24-player sides will be exposed on May 3. The 2021 Palmer Cup will be played June 11-13 at Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Illinois.


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