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Thursday, May 23, 2024

The Florida men’s golf team dominated at home in this weekend’s SunTrust Gator Invitational, finishing in first place with a total score of 841 (283-279-279, +1).

It marked the seventh-consecutive year the Gators have won their home tournament.

Florida also owned the individual board, with three golfers tying for third and the remaining two in a tie for seventh. But the squad had to battle for its rankings, as it was a tournament of comebacks.

“I was particularly pleased with how many bounce backs there appeared to be,” UF coach Buddy Alexander said. “I can’t say enough about Tim McKenney, the start he got off to was just unbelievable. And then to bounce back with a low round yesterday and a low round again today, a big tip of the cap to Tim.

It’s something we have been working on and I think that is the biggest thing that happened this weekend for us in terms of his confidence.”

McKenney had the most impressive come-from-behind performance for the Gators. In the first round of the tournament, the senior fell to seven-over-par, but didn’t get discouraged.

He finished rounds two and three carding a one- and four-under, respectively.

McKenney eagled in his second round and shot a total of 11 birdies. He finished with a three-round score of 212 (77-69-66, +2).

Also in third were senior Tyson Alexander (71-70-71, +2) and junior Andres Echavarria (68-74-70, +2).

Echavarria started out strong in the tournament at two under par but struggled in his second round with four bogeys. He found redemption in the final round making an even par with four birdies.

Freshman Phillip Choi (72-70-72, +4) and junior Bank Vongvanij (72-70-72, +4) had identical scores and finished in a tie for seventh place.

As individuals, the Gators’ golfers did not fair as well as their teammates.

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Freshman Tyler McCumber finished in a tie for 31st, carding a 221 (75-78-68, +11).

Fellow freshman Tommy Mou finished five places behind in a tie for 36th with a 54 hole total of 222 (78-69-75, +12).

Rounding out the individuals, junior Robbie Wight tied for 42nd with 223 (75-74-74, +13).

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