Red Raider golf falls short of NCAA Championship berth
MURRELLS INLET, South Carolina – Texas Tech needed to finish fifth or better to advance, but were unable to get any momentum going on Wednesday at the Myrtle Beach Regional where the Red Raiders completed the tournament in ninth at TPC of Myrtle Beach to end their season.
"These guys have worked really hard all year and then you have to look them in the eye and tell them you love them for who they are and not for what's on the scoreboard," Texas Tech coach Greg Sands said. "Today was tough. These guys have meant a lot and have worked really hard. It's a tough part of the game."
Ivan Ramirez led the Red Raiders throughout the week and finished 12th overall individually at 3-under-par for the tournament with a 70-71-72 – 213 scorecard, while Sandy Scott was even-par (74-71-71 – 216) during the 54-hole tournament to finish 20th. The Red Raiders were 1-over for the regional after carding a 289-288-288 – 865 in their 18th straight NCAA tournament appearance but would fall short of reaching the NCAA Championship which will be played May 24-29 at Blessings Golf Club in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Illinois claimed the Myrtle Beach Regional Championship by shooting 25-under, followed by Ohio State (20-under) and Wake Forest (15-under) for the top three spots. Tech came into the final round on Wednesday in sixth place just three strokes back of fifth place and were four back of that standing as they started the back-9. Cal, which came into the final round in fifth, shot 12-under in its final round to finish fourth while UNLV secured its place in the national tournament at 8-under following a tournament where it put together a 288-284-284 – 856 total.
Individually, Illinois junior Michael Feagles won the regional title by shooting 15-under (68-68-65 – 201) followed by Oregon's Edwin Yi who took second at 14-under to secure his berth to the national tournament.
Texas Tech freshman Jansen Smith completed his first regional tournament at 4-over and in 35th overall, while senior Adam Blomme (5-over) was 43rd and sophomore Kyle Hogan (6-over) finished 49th for the Red Raiders.
A senior from Colombia, Ramirez shot even-par on Wednesday's final round after recording four birdies, four bogeys and 12 pars. Playing in his third and final regional, Ramirez made 12 birdies during the three-round tournament and led the Red Raiders by shooting 8-under on par 5s for the week. Starting on the back-9 on Wednesday, Ramirez was 1-under on his first nine holes with two birdies and a bogey before shooting 1-over on his final nine with three bogeys and a birdie. A junior from Scotland, Scott recorded a 71 for the second straight round after making five birdies in his final round. He was 1-under on his first nine holes of the day, making birdie on 12, 13 and 14 before a bogey on 15 slowed his momentum. Three straight pars were followed by a birdie on No.1 but Scott completed the round at 1-over with a pair of bogeys, a birdie on No. 7 and five pars. For the tournament, Scott led Tech with 14 birdies and also made 28 pars.
Smith shot 75-73-72 – 220 for the week, recording his best round on the final day after making three birdies, 12 pars and three bogeys. A San Angelo native, Smith would make three straight birdies on 12, 13 and 14 for the Red Raiders before stringing together five straight pars. That momentum was halted though with back-to-back bogeys before six straight pars to end his round at even for the day. Blomme, a senior from Sweden, shot 74-74-73 – 221 for the tournament while Hogan completed the regional at 71-73-78 – 222. Blomme would make two birdies on Wednesday and had nine for the tournament.
Ramirez and Scott will be back in competition playing on Arnold Palmer Cup International Team from June 7-9 at prestigious event that will be played at The Alotian Club in Arkansas.