+ College Golf

Gamecocks return to NCAA Finals

The South Carolina Gamecocks carded the best round of the NCAA Regional at Bremerton, Washington and earned their third straight trip to the NCAA Finals.

The Gamecocks shot a tournament best round of 14 under par to earn a return trip to the NCAA Finals.

The Gamecocks shot a tournament best round of 14 under par to earn a return trip to the NCAA Finals.

The Gamecocks were 14 under par in the final round and turned in a team total of 274 for the best round of the regional.

The strong finish boosted South Carolina to second place, two shots behind the Region champions from UAB.

“It was very impressive,” said Gamecock coach Bill McDonald. “At the turn we were maybe on the number or just outside the number looking like we might not even qualify. Then a few holes into the back nine we had a chance to win the golf tournament,” he said.

The Gamecocks shot 15 under par on the final nine holes.

“We just went nuts on the back nine. It was exciting and was some incredible golf. For me as a coach it was just a really fun day for us. I couldn’t be more proud of these guys with the way they played with all that pressure on them. It was just amazing,” McDonald said.

SEC individual champion Matt NeSmith led the way for the Gamecocks. The USC junior shot a 5-under par round of 67.

Four of the five Gamecocks posted scores under par. Will Starke, Will Murphy and Caleb Sturgeon all shot 3-under par rounds of 69.

NeSmith finished in a tie for sixth place, Starke tied for eighth and Sean Kelly finished in a tie for 20th place.

USC will net play at Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, Florida. The NCAA Finals begin on May 29th and run through June 3rd.

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