Jayhawks end season in Austin
AUSTIN, Texas – Falling short of the fifth-place spot to qualify for the NCAA Championship, Kansas men’s golf called its season a wrap on a high note Wednesday, with under par rounds from senior Chase Hanna, sophomore Charlie Hillier and freshman Andy Spencer on the final day of the NCAA Regional.
“We played much better today,” head coach Jamie Bermel said. “Happy to see the guys fight back.”
Playing in his final round as a Jayhawk, Hanna got off to a quick start with a birdie on his second hole. Going for the green in two on the par-5 15th, Hanna’s approach shot nicked the branches of an overhanging tree, causing the ball to land in a sand trap. Nonetheless, Hanna saved birdie, his first of three in a row before a tee shot on the 17th landed in another sand trap, slowing his momentum with back-to-back bogeys. Hanna played his back nine at even par with two birdies to match his two bogeys and ended the day with 2-under-par, 69. At 6-over par, Hanna finished the event tied for 31st.
Sophomore Charlie Hillier continued improving, recording a 4-under-par 67, eight strokes better than day two. Hillier’s final round performance, which equaled his best round on the season, landed him in a tie for 37th at 8-over par. Playing his first eight holes at 4-under-par, Hillier found his first bogey on the 18th but quickly responded with back-to-back birdies on holes one and two. With only one additional bogey on his card, Hillier led the squad on the final day.
Taking advantage of The University of Texas Golf Club and his first ever post-season experience, freshman Andy Spencer was the third Jayhawk to post a card in red numbers. Spencer recorded back-to-back bogeys on his fourth and fifth holes, but back-to-back bogeys on his eighth and ninth resulted in an even-par-front nine. Playing the first four holes of the back nine at 3-under par, Spencer bogeyed his last two holes to enter the clubhouse with a 70. Spencer ended the event in a tie for 49th at 10-over par.
Despite two quick birdies, junior Daniel Sutton recorded four-straight bogeys to close out his front nine, followed by three straight bogeys on the back nine to end the day at 5-over par. Sutton posted a solid 1-over-par round on Tuesday and as a result ended the entire event in a tie for 49th.
Junior Daniel Hudson was the final contribution to the team score for the day, posting a 2-over-par, 73. Hudson improved his score each round, including three strokes better than day two, to end the tournament in a tie for 59th.
As a team, the Jayhawks were 5-under par for the day and 24-over for the Regional. Kansas finished in ninth place, 17 strokes behind Arizona State, which claimed the final qualifying slot. No. 3 Oklahoma State edged out No. 18 Texas to claim victory at the NCAA Regional in Austin. Iowa State and No. 22 Ole Miss will also advance to the NCAA Championship.
“Overall, we did a lot of good things this year,” Bermel said. “We had two team victories, Chase won twice, the team finished third in the Big 12 and we did well in the classroom. We’re going to miss Chase. He had a great career and was a great leader for our team.”
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.