+ College Golf

Tigers set records in the deserrt

Clemson’s super-senior Kyle Cottam finished in 5th place at 14-under par. (Clemson photo)

It is a little hard to believe a college team can shoot 43-under par for a 54 hole tournament and not finish on top.

The Clemson Tigers shot a three-day total of 43 under par 797, but Georgia Tech was one shot better.

Tech won the shoot-out with the Tigers at the season opening Maui Jim Intercollegiate in Scottsdale, Arizona.

The tournament was played at the par-70 Mirabel Golf Club.

All five Tiger golfers posted rounds in the 60s on the final day to shave three shots off the 4-shot lead Georgia Tech had over the Tigers going into the final round.

” We had some chances coming in, but you just have to tip your hat to Georgia Tech. They played great too,” said Clemson coach Jordan Byrd.

Amazingly the Tigers only counted one round out of the 60s when the Clemson used a 70 as a counting round the second day.

The tournament was the first for the Tigers under the direction of their new head coach.

After serving as legendary Hall of Fame coach Larry Penley’s assistant for 16 years, Byrd took over the program from the retiring Penley last July.

“It was a great weekend shooting 43-under-par. I was really proud of the guys. We were nine shots down on the back nine today, but kept fighting,” said Byrd.

The Tigers were led by Kyle Cottam. The super-senior finished in fifth place after shooting a final round 3-under par 67. His last round included a birdie on his final hole to pull Clemson within a shot of Georgia Tech.

Clemson senior Jacob Bridgeman, who was named to the Haskins Award watch list, shot a second round 8-under par 62. His round included six birdies on the back nine including a run of 4-birdies in his last five holes.

Bridgeman finished tied for ninth to give the Tigers two golfers in the top-10.

The rest of the team was not far behind.

Sophomore Carter Pendley finished in a tie for 17th. Super-Senior Colby Patton tied for 19th while senior Zach Gordon finished in a tie for 24th.

While Clemson missed the win by a shot, the tournament produced a number of new program records.

All five Clemson players shot par-or-better in all three rounds for the first time. It also marked the first time in school history Clemson shot under 270 in all three rounds. The Tigers had 80 birdies and two eagles as a team, the most under-par holes in a 54-hole tournament in school history.

“Everyone in the lineup shot par-or-better each day and Kian Rose played very well as an individual, including his 67 today.  For Carter Pendley to shoot eight-under after playing just one tournament last year was very impressive. Coach (Joey) Maxon walked with him two of the days and I think really helped him,” said Byrd.

The Tigers will next play in the Scenic City Intercollegiate at the Honors Course in Chattanooga starting on September 20th.

Maui Jim scoring from Golfstat http://results.golfstat.com/public/leaderboards/gsnav.cfm?pg=team&tid=23769

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