Keller Harper was 5-shots out of the lead going into the final round of the Pinnacle Bank Intercollegiate at Hilton Head.
The 2-time SoCon Player of the Year didn’t waste any time chasing down the leaders.
“I got back on track on the last nine in my second round and I thought I would need around a 66 to get in the hunt,’ he said.
Harper birdied his first hole of the day and added four more birdies and one bogey to make the turn at 4 under par.
High Point’s Brandon Einstein shared the 36 hole lead with Preston Topper from Kennesaw State at 4-under par 140.
While Topper fell off the lead, Einstein kept a 2-shot lead over Harper at the turn, but Harper kept charging.
“Its a tough course and I couldn’t ue my driver as much, but I was able to play iunder control and made a lot of putts,” siad Harper.
The Paladin senior took over the lead by the 17th hole and held a 1-shot advantage playing 18.
With no on course scoring Harper knew he gained on the leader, but was not sure exactly where he stood.
On the final hole Harper caught a flyer and missed the green. A 20 foot par putt rolled by the hole and Harper dropped back to 4-under par for the tournament.
Einstein playing several groups behind Harper was able to birdie the final hole to tie for medalist honors at 4-under par 212 for the 54 hole tournament played at the Palmetto Hall Plantation courses.
His 5-under par final round 67 was the low round of the tournament and earned Harper his third college victory.
“So happy to see Keller pick up the third collegiate win in his career. An amazing start to the spring for him,” said Paladin coach Matt Davidson.
The win tied Harper with his coach on the schools all-time wins list.
“We don’t play off in college tournaments, I wish we could, but it still is a win and I’m pleased with the way I am playing now,” he said.
Charleston Southern won the team title by 2-shots over Augusta.
The Paladins finished 3rd in their first action of the season. The Furman team posted the lowest score in the final round to get within 4-shots of the winners.
All five Paladins improved their final round score by at least one stroke. Jack Crosby recorded a top-10 performance finishing tied for seventh with a final round 73.
“We are going to take a lot of positives from this week, while learning what we still have to continue working on. We led the tournament in birdies and definitely showed how high our potential is going forward,” said the Furman coach.
Complete tournament scores http://results.golfstat.com//public/leaderboards/gsnav.cfm?pg=team&tid=21840
Lander tames the Hurricane
The Lander Bearcats made up a 3-shot deficit and pulled away in the final round to claim their first team title of the year at the Hurricane Invitational.
“Our guys were really confident the night before the final round,” said Lander coach Mark Riddle. “They went out and played with that confidence and won,” he said.
Lander shot a final round even par 288 to take a 6-shot victory at the Doublegate Country Club in Albany, Georgia. At a couple of points in the last round the Bearcats were in red numbers before finishing even.
“The best thing about the win is we all played well, but the guys believe they can play even better. This a great start to the spring for us,” said Riddle.
Newberry College golfer Patrick Jacobs won the individual title by 2-shots after shooting a final round 64. His 8-under par round brought him from a tie for 17th to the victory.
Junior Maxime Legros from Lander finished second while Evans Lewis from North Greenville was fourth.
The Bearcats placed two other golfers in the top 10. Freshman Linus Johnson finished in a tie for 6th and sophomore Valentin Peugnet tied for 8th place.
Having some of his younger players contributing to the come from behind win is another encouraging sign for their coach.
“With all the rain, we haven’t been able to practice much so I’m looking forward to what these young players can do once they get on a good practice schedule,” said the Bearcat coach.
Tournament scores at http://results.golfstat.com//public/leaderboards/gsnav.cfm?pg=team&tid=21372
Grimes wins Converse Invite title
At the Carolina Country Club Sydney Grimes shot identical rounds of 77 to claim medalist honors at the Converse College Spring Invite presented by Founders.
The Valkyries’ sophomore helped her team finish second behind North Greenville.
The Crusaders topped the home team by 4-shots for the tournament title.
North Greenville’s Elena Denny finished second while teammates Jordan Kirkley and Kathleen Bonham finished in the top-10.
Limestone finishes second at Lady Moc Classic
Limestone missed their fourth straight women’s team title when they fell 1-shot short at the Lady Moc Golf Classic in Lakeland, Florida.
The 8th ranked Lynn University team slipped by the 3rd ranked Saints for the win with a final round score of 292 to Limestone’s 294.
Alice Gotbring from Barry University finished 3-shots in front of Anderson University’s Jessica Rathbone for the tournament victory.
Limestone’s Pilar Martinez finished in a tie for 3rd place with a 217 total, 4 shots behind the tournament champion.