The Florida men’s golf team wrapped up their Spring Break on a disappointing note.
The Gators came in 14th place out of 15 teams in the Southern Highlands Collegiate Masters in Las Vegas, carding a tournament total of 937 (292-326-319, +73). The squad fell short of its goal of improving its 2009 finish of fourth place in the same tournament.
“I never envisioned that we could play this poorly as we did these past two days,” UF coach Buddy Alexander said. “It was humbling and to a certain degree it was even a little bit embarrassing. We may not be as good as we thought were, but I do know we’re not as bad as we played this weekend.”
On a more positive note, senior Tyson Alexander finished in a tie for second place with T.J. Vogel from Southern Cal. Alexander finished with a three round total of 220 (68-80-72, +4).
Alexander started the tournament out on a strong note and finished his first 18 holes four-under par with four birdies. He didn’t fair so well in his second round, struggling to recover from bogeys on his first four holes, he went on to card eight over. The senior bounced back and shot an even par to wrap up the tournament.
“I actually expected my freshmen to struggle a little bit in that they probably haven’t seen greens like this [course] before and I had a feeling that they may not have a great week, but I definitely expected them to play better than they did,” coach Alexander said. “The upperclassmen have had the experience of playing on a golf course like this and they certainly could have played a whole lot better than this.”
Finishing 46 spots behind Alexander, fellow senior Tim McKenney finished in a tie for 48th with a three-round total of 237 (75-79-83, +21).
The rest of the team finished in the lower half of the leaderboard. Freshman Phillip Choi carded a 54 hole total of 240 (76-82-82, +240), good for a tie for 61st. Following six spots back in a tie for 67th, junior Andres Echavarria shot 243 (73-85-85, +27).
Rounding out the lineup for the Gators, freshman Tyler McCumber finished in 77th.
“We’ve got to do a little soul searching and figure out how to fix [this] and we don’t have a lot of time to do that,” Alexander said. “We play next weekend and that’s probably a good thing.”