USC Aiken, Flagler’s Dahlenburg Take Titles at Bearcat Invitational
USC Aiken won their first team title of the year while
Flagler’s Joel Dahlenburg won the individual title at the
Lander Bearcat Invitational on Tuesday. The Pacers shot
eight-under-par as a team, including a 281 in the second round, to
dominate the field and win by 19 strokes. Dahlenburg shot 66
and 67 in his first two rounds to win the individual title by three
strokes. In all, 10 of the 11 PBC schools played at the
event, with Georgia College finishing second and Columbus State in
The tournament victory at the Bearcat Golf Classic is the first for USC Aiken since claiming the 12th Annual Cleveland Golf Palmetto Intercollegiate on Mar. 10, 2009. USC Aiken has now won 74 tournaments in its NCAA era.
All five Pacers playing in the Bearcat Golf Classic finished in the top 20 individually. Gaines Milliner (Aiken, S.C./Aiken) was the top Pacer finisher, ending his efforts in a tie for fourth at 2-under 214. Milliner opened the event by posting a 77 in round one. He rebounded by scoring under par in both the second (68) and third round (69). The fourth place finish garnered Milliner his first ever top-5 finish.
JP Solis (Morelia, Mexico/Lico Morelia) and Taylor Welborn (LaGrange, Ga./Darton) tied for eighth with a three-round even par score of 216. Solis (70-69-77) has now acquired three top-10 finishes this spring. Welborn (76-69-71) with his eighth place individual finish collected his second top-10 finish of the 2011-12 season.
Matt Atkins (Owensboro, Ky./Henderson State) and Hayden Letien (Sumter, S.C./Sumter) both concluded the Bearcat Golf Classic tied for 18th at 221. It was the seventh top-20 performance of the year for Atkins (71-78-72). Letien (73-75-73) now has finished in the top 20 in two of the last three tournaments for the Pacers.
Dahlenburg shot a school-record 209 (-7). The previous low for a 54-hole tournament was Chris Bray’s 210 at the Will Wilson Southeast Preview, Oct .20, 2009. He had the lowest round of the tournament, a 6-under par 66, in the first round and a 67 in the second round and then finished with a 76 on Tuesday. Dahlenburg won by three strokes over Adam Hedges of Belmont Abbey and Jon Weiss of Newberry. The field included 90 golfers.
Flagler finished in seventh place as a team. Christopher Waxberg shot a 6-over 222 and finished in a tie for 22nd place. Greg Mergel shot an 11-over 227 and finished in a tie for 37th place. Jonathan Folkner a 22-over 238 and tied for 76th place while Alex Bennett rounded out the Flagler contingent with a 24-over 240 and he finished in a tie for 81st place.
Powered by two golfers in the top-10, the No. 22 Georgia College golf squad took second. Freshman Ryan Trocchio (Norcross, Ga.) and junior Taylor Smith (Mansfield, Ga.) came into the day tied, and finished there after both carding 73s in the final round. Both golfers were one-over par at 217. Trocchio went 73-71-73, while Smith carded rounds of 68-76-73. It was the fourth top-10 finish for Trocchio is seven tournaments, while Smith has recorded a pair this season.
The low round for GC in the final round belonged to junior Patrick Garrett (Kennesaw, Ga.), posting an even-par 72. He finished one stroke behind the lead pair of Bobcats in 13th place. (73-73-72=218). Freshman David Sullivan (Woodstock, Ga.) struggled with an 80 after carding rounds of 74 and 73 yesterday, and took 37th at plus-11. Classmate Victor Monte (Chantilly, Va.) recorded a counting round today of 76, and finished 51st after yesterday's rounds of 74 and 80.
For Columbus State, Rourke Van der Spuy shot an even-par 72 in round three to finish the event with a two-under 214, good enough to place him in a tie for fourth place. Steven Paine posted a three-over 75 on the afternoon as he rounded out the event in a tie for 18th, recording a five-over 221.
Johan Swanepoel matched his round two score of 76 in the final round as ended the tournament in a tie for 32nd with a 10-over 226. Justin Grice was a stroke behind his teammate for the day and tournament posting a 77 and 227, respectively. The final tally was good enough for a 37th place tie. Daniel Glidewell had the Cougars drop score posting a nine-over 81 on the afternoon and finished the tournament with a 14-over 236.
Georgia Southwestern finished sixth as Craig Gibson finished in a tie for fourth after a 66 in the second round. He finished two-under-par 214. Armstrong Atlantic State was tied for 11th. Matt Motes led the Pirates with a three-over 219. Montevallo finished 13th with Austin Murphey going low with a six-over 222. Clayton State was just behind in 14th as Ryan Haskell finished in a tie for 32nd. North Georgia was 16th as both Howard Duffin and Aaron George shot 230 for the three rounds and host Lander was in 17th as Oliver Van Nairn shot an even-par 72 in the final round to finish in a tie for 37th.