Men's Golf Finishes Third in Tightly-Contested SAA Championship

Men's Golf Finishes Third in Tightly-Contested SAA Championship

The Oglethorpe men's golf team finished third at the SAA Golf Championships in Maumelle, Arkansas, this weekend, finishing the 54-hole tournament with a 10-over-par 298 on Sunday to come in at 30-over 894 for the weekend. That put them just four strokes back of champions Rhodes.

Individually, sophomore Patrick Mills was unable to hold onto his lead, but he did earn a third-place finish, posting a 2-over 74 on Sunday for a 3-over 219 on the weekend. That mark put him just a stroke back of a tie for the individual medal between Berry's Ryan Elmore and Birmingham-Southern's Steven LaMay.

Mills was joined in the top 10 by two other Stormy Petrels, as sophomores Kyle Shealy and Jacob Arnett both accomplished the feat. Shealy posted a 4-over 76 on they day to finish at 8-over 224 for the tournament, putting him in a tie for eighth at six strokes back of the lead. Arnett posted an even-par 72 on Sunday for a 9-over 225 on the weekend, putting him in a tie for 10th at seven back.

Freshman Kenny Park came just short of that, posting a 4-over 76 on the day to finish at 10-over 226 for the tournament, putting him in 15th place, eight strokes back. Freshman Chris Cerminaro posted a 14-over 86 on Sunday to finish tied for 38th at 31-over 247 for the tournament. Sophomore Jake Thomas carded a 14-over 86 in the final round to finish at 47-over 263 for the weekend, putting him in 44th place.

Rhodes won the tournament at 26-over 890, while Berry came in three strokes back of that in second place. The Petrels bested Birmingham-Southern by three strokes for third place, while Centre finished fifth, eight behind Rhodes and four behind Oglethorpe.

"We had such a good Day 2 comeback," said Oglethorpe head coach Jim Owen. "We just couldn't finish the deal. We gave it absolutely everything we had, but Rhodes had a little bit more. We had three putts on the next-to-last hole, and had we made all of them, we likely would've won the tournament. It just wasn't to be, though. This was a really tight field, and any of three teams had a chance to win at the end. We'll now turn our attention to nationals. We'll hope our name is called for one of the at-large spots, then go from there."

With Rhodes holding the SAA's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Men's Golf Championship, the Petrels will now have to earn an at-large bid from the selection committee. They currently sit ranked seventh in the nation in the Golfstat Relative Ranking and sixth in the Bushnell Golfweek Coaches Poll. The 42-team field will be selected on May 8, and the Petrels will be looking to nab one of seven general at-large selections.
 
The 2017 NCAA Division III Championship will be co-hosted by Oglethorpe and the Central Florida Sports Commission at Mission Inn Resort and Club in Howey-in-the-Hills, Florida, May 16 through 19. It will mark the second time Oglethorpe has hosted the event, with the last taking place in May 2012 at the same venue with the same co-host.

Second Round Recap

The Oglethorpe men's golf team came back from a disappointing first round at the SAA Men's Golf Championship in Maumelle, Arkansas, with an impressive second round performance, firing a 5-under-par 283 on Saturday at the Maumelle Country Club course for, by far, the best round of the tournament so far by anybody in the 8-team field. That moved them up into a tie for second place with Centre at 20-over 596, just a single stroke behind first-place Rhodes.

Sophomore Patrick Mills sliced five strokes off his first-round score and moved into the individual lead as a result, posting a 2-under 70 on Saturday to vault four spots up the leaderboard and finish the first 36 holes at 1-over 145. That put him two strokes ahead of a second-place tie between Berry's Ryan Elmore and Centre's Andrew Horn. 

It wasn't just Mills, though, as the Petrels got outstanding performances up and down the scorecard. Sophomore Kyle Shealy earned a top five spot, as well, putting up a 2-under 70 of his own to come in just three strokes back of Mills at 4-over 148 and move 18 spots up the leaderboard. Freshman Kenny Park took 10 strokes off of his first-round score, posting a 70 of his own to move 16 spots up the leaderboard. He finished the day tied for 11th at 6-over 150, putting him five back of Mills. Meanwhile, sophomore Jacob Arnett also earned a spot in the top 20 with a 1-over 73 to move himself into a tie for 18th. He sat at 9-over 153 through 36 holes, putting him eight strokes behind Mills.

Freshman Chris Cerminaro and sophomore Jake Thomas rounded out the Oglethorpe scorecard on the day. Cerminaro fired a 7-over 79 to put himself at 17-over 161 for the tournament, while Thomas posted a 14-over 86 for a 33-over 177 for the weekend so far.

Rhodes sat in first place at 19-over 595, with the Petrels and Colonels just a stroke back. Berry sat in fourth place at eight strokes back of the Lynx, while Sewanee rounded out the top five at 13 back.

The Petrels will take to the course at 9:30 a.m. Eastern on Sunday, as they look for their third SAA championship and 13th overall conference title.

First Round Recap

The Oglethorpe men's golf team had a difficult day Friday at the SAA Golf Championships in Maumelle, Arkansas, firing a 25-over-par 313 on the difficult Maumelle Country Club course to finish the day tied for fifth, 15 strokes back of leaders Berry. 

The Petrels were led by sophomore Patrick Mills on the evening, as he fired a 3-over 75 to finish the day three strokes back of Berry's Ryan Elmore, the individual leader. Fellow sophomore Kyle Shealy also finished the day in the top half of the field, posting a 6-over 78 on the day to finish tied for 22nd. Sophomore Jake Arnett and freshman Kenny Park finished tied for 27th after posting rounds of 8-over 80.

Rounding out the Oglethorpe scorecard, freshman Chris Cerminaro posted a 10-over 82 and sophomore Jake Thomas finished with a 19-over 91.

Berry finished atop the tournament field on the day after carding a 10-over 298, while Rhodes came in a stroke back of that. Centre sits in third place at seven strokes back, Sewanee sits fourth at nine strokes back, and the Petrels are tied with Birmingham-Southern for fifth, 15 back.

The Petrels will be back at Maumelle Country Club on Saturday, and will tee off at 9:36 a.m. Eastern time with Thomas starting the day. 

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