A pair of 61s, Michigan State’s record performances in wake of tragedy and more highlights from the last week in college golf
The scores were low in Hawaii at the Burns Intercollegiate.
Not only was there a record score in the team competition, but there were two golfers who shot 61s during the event, including 2022 U.S. Amateur champion Sam Bennett, a fifth-year senior at Texas A&M.
Each week, Golfweek will put together a roundup of the best individual and team performances from across the country, as teams continue on the road to Grayhawk, highlighting spectacular performances and keeping you up to date on which teams are making a title push.
Here’s what you need to know from the last week in college golf.
A pair of 61s highlight Burns Intercollegiate
Sam Bennett shot 61 in the final round of the Burns Intercollegiate. (Photo: Burns Intercollegiate)
It’s safe to say Bennett tamed the Ocean Course at Hokuala in Lihue, Hawaii. Look no further than the 11-under 61 he shot during the final round.
Bennett, ranked 42nd in the Golfweek/Sagarin rankings, carded 11 birdies, seven of those coming in his first eight holes, to finish at 18 under for the tournament. He shared individual medalist honors with California’s Sampson Zhang.
However, Bennett wasn’t the only golfer to shoot 61 in Hawaii. Long Beach State’s Ian Gilligan also carded a 61 in the first round. Gilligan, No. 9 in the Sagarin rankings, finished T-3 at 17 under, tied with BYU’s Carson Lundell.
No. 42 BYU captured the team title, also in a record-setting fashion. The Cougars shot 54 under as a team, beating No. 19 Arizona by 18 strokes. No. 15 Texas A&M placed third at 32 under.
For BYU, Lundell finished T-3, Keanu Akina came in fifth at 14 under while David Timmins and Tyson Shelley each tied for 10th at 10 under.
A special tournament for Michigan State
Michigan State’s Leila Raines tied for medalist honors at the Moon Golf Invitational. (Photo: Michigan State women’s golf)
To say the past week has been difficult for Michigan State would be an understatement.
Last week, a gunman killed three students and injured five others in a shooting on Michigan State’s main campus. The Spartans were competing with heavy hearts, but they were inspired.
Leila Raines shot 7-under 65 in the final round of the Moon Golf Invitational at Suntree Country Club’s Classic Course in Melbourne, Florida, vaulting her to share medalist honors at 13 under, falling on the second playoff hole. The 203 total score ties the lowest mark in program history.
In that final round, the No. 45 Spartans shot 276, which is the second-lowest round in program history. They vaulted five spots up the leaderboard and finished fifth at 14 under..
No. 8 LSU won the team title, shooting 30 under and beating No. 26 Northwestern by nine shots. Augusta’s Mirabel Ting beat Raines in the playoff to win.
Lottie Woad, sixth in the Golfweek/Sagarin rankings, finished third at 10 under. No. 2 Ingrid Lindblad tied for fifth at 8 under.
San Jose State beats Stanford in Battle of the Bay
The Battle of the Bay goes to the Spartans!
Wins by Lucia Lopez Ortega@KArwefjall @atemalate #AllSpartans pic.twitter.com/Fp1Aib8JsF
— San Jose State Women's Golf (@SanJoseStWGOLF) February 22, 2023
Dating to last year, San Jose State has gone toe-to-toe with the Stanford Cardinal. The Spartans upset Stanford last year, ending its bid for a perfect season after winning the Lamkin Invitational in February.
This year, the two top-ranked teams competed in match play in the Battle of the Bay, and San Jose State again found a way to beat Stanford. The No. 6 Spartans beat the top-ranked Cardinal, 3-2-1.
Antonia Malate clinched the winning point for San Jose State on the 18th hole at CordeValle. Lucia Lopez Ortega clinched the first point with her 2 and 1 victory over No. 12 Megha Ganne. No. 26 Kaysa Arwefjall had the third win, topping Angelina Ye, 6 and 5.
The top-ranked amateur in the world, Stanford sophomore Rose Zhang, was 1 up with two holes to play, but San Jose State’s Rebecca Gyllner tied the match on the 18th hole to halve.
Kelly Xu and Sadie Englemann each won their matches for Stanford.
The Cardinal and Spartans will compete at the Julie Inkster at Meadow Club Invitational in two weeks.
Vanderbilt holds off Georgia Tech for another win
The Vanderbilt men’s golf team won the Watersound Invitational. (Photo: Vanderbilt men’s golf)
The Vanderbilt men’s golf team has spent the majority of this season as the top-ranked squad in the Golfweek/Sagarin rankings, and it continues to prove it’s worthy of that distinction.
The Commodores won again, this time at the Watersound Invitational. They finished at 38 under, beating No. 11 Georgia Tech by one shot. The Yellow Jackets made a late charge in the final round, shooting 21-under 267, but Vanderbilt’s 14-under 274 was enough to win for its third straight team title. Cole Sherwood made an eagle on the par-5 17th hole to put Vanderbilt back in front and claim the win.
No. 14 Florida State finished third at 24 under, and No. 18 Alabama was a stroke behind the Seminoles.
In the individual race, Florida State’s Frederik Kjettrup carded an 18-under 198, beating top-ranked Gordon Sargent from Vanderbilt and Georgia Tech’s Christo Lanprecht by five shots. Sherwood tied for fourth at 12 under with Florida State’s Michael Mays, who was playing as an individual.
Aberg holds off Thorbjornsen at PGA West
Texas Tech’s Ludvig Aberg tees off on three during the final round of the Prestige college golf tournament on the Norman Course of PGA West in La Quinta, Calif., Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2023. (Andy Abeyta/The Desert Sun / USA TODAY NETWORK)
A second day of strong desert winds and unseasonably cold conditions wasn’t enough to stop Ludvig Aberg from winning a third consecutive Prestige at PGA West individual golf title Wednesday.
Aberg, a senior at Texas Tech, fired a 1-under 70 in conditions that had rule officials considering calling off the round at the Norman Course at PGA West in La Quinta. As play continued in a round that lasted more than six hours because of the wind, Aberg survived to rally past Stanford’s Michael Thorbjornsen despite playing the final six holes in 3 over.
Here’s more on Aberg’s victory.
The Golf Coaches Association of America is searching for recipient for the Ron Balicki Scholarship.
Jane Lloyd, who founded Duke women’s golf program, dies at 91
Golfweek/Sagarin rankings update
The teams at the top remain the same this week, and it’s in large part thanks to their top-ranked players.
Vanderbilt is holding strong as the top-ranked men’s team while Stanford is the highest women’s team. And it’s a pair of sophomores leading both, with Gordon Sargent pacing the Commodores and Rose Zhang guiding the Cardinal.
College facility spotlight: Kansas
Kansas’ college golf facility, The Jayhawk Club. (Photo: Kansas Athletics)
We’re continuing to spotlight college golf practice facilities from around the country.
This week, take a look at Kansas’ The Jayhawk Club.