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Friday, April 12, 2024

Florida men’s golf starts spring season with win at the Pablo Creek Collegiate Cup

The Gators defeated Jacksonville 6-1 in match play

Florida Gators men's golf junior Quentin Debove holds his club Monday, Oct. 24, 2022, at Isleworth Country Club in Gainesville, FL / UAA Communications photo by Anna Carrington
Florida Gators men's golf junior Quentin Debove holds his club Monday, Oct. 24, 2022, at Isleworth Country Club in Gainesville, FL / UAA Communications photo by Anna Carrington

The No. 21 Florida Gators men’s golf team earned a dominant victory Monday defeating Jacksonville University 6-1 in its spring season opener. Florida earned its second win this season. 

Senior Quentin Debove had a strong performance to earn the Gators their first point of the day. After halving the first hole, Debove proceeded to not concede a single hole for the rest of the match. He ultimately secured his match 9 up. 

Fifth-year John DuBois was next to play. He continued the hot streak winning 6 and 4 to put the Gators up 2-0 in the seven-match tournament. This win gave DuBois wins in his last six straight matches as well as an overall match play record of 9-2 in his collegiate career. 

However, it wasn’t over yet for Jacksonville. Tomas Hjalsted, a sophomore from Iceland, won the next match against Florida’s Parker Bell 2 up. Bell was up and down throughout this matchup recording six birdies, three bogeys, and two double bogeys in his fifth start of the year. 

Jack Turner, a freshman from Orlando, responded to Jackonville’s win by securing a point for Florida. In his second tournament as a Gator, Turner didn’t lose a single hole on his way to a 7 and 5 victory. Turner’s victory added to the Gators’ advantage, leading 3-1.

With Florida needing only one more point to secure the match, they quickly found it in the play of sophomore Matthew Kress.

Kress, who had his best finish this past fall winning the Georgetown Intercollegiate, carried this stellar play into his first spring tournament. He won his match 4 and 3 earning the match clinching point for the Gators. 

Both teams decided to continue play and finish the remaining two matches. 

One minute after Kress’ victory, Ian Gilligan, a junior transfer from Long Beach State, earned the fifth point for Florida, putting the team up 5-1 with only one match remaining. He ultimately finished 2 up against his opponent. 

Tyler Wilkes finished his match last for the Gators, taking the match 4 and 2. He helped the Gators finish 6-1 on the day and walk out of Pablo Creek with the win. 

After winning just one out of five tournaments in the fall, the Gators came out determined in their first match of the year. 

With the win, the Gators added to their spring-opener win streak with four straight and their overall match play record of 13-8-1 in the past seven years. 

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For head coach J.C. Deacon, this match marked his 23rd tournament win as Florida’s coach. 

Looking ahead, the Gators will be back in action Monday in Jacksonville for the Sea Best Invitational at TPC Sawgrass. They’ll look to secure their seventh victory at the particular tournament. 

Contact Hannah Getman at hgetman@alligator.org. Follow her on Twitter @hannahgetman

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