Oct. 12, 2010
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VESTAVIA HILLS, Ala. - The 15th-ranked Auburn men's golf team (373-829) earned team and individual medalist honors Tuesday at the Jerry Pate National, defeating top-ranked Florida and No. 4 Alabama at Old Overton Golf Club in Vestavia Hills, Ala.
The Tigers entered the final 18 holes at 4-under, trailing Florida by two strokes. With just six holes remaining, the Tigers tied Florida at 6-under. It was all Auburn from that point on as the Tigers carded eight birdies to three bogeys, running away with a seven stroke win over the Gators.
Freshman Niclas Carlsson (70-202) claimed medalist honors followed by sophomore Michael Hebert (67-207) in fourth and sophomore Blayne Barber (66-208) tied for fifth, marking the first event with three Auburn top-fives since the 2006 Billy Hitchcock. Sophomore Dominic Bozzelli (70-218) tied for 24th in his collegiate debut followed by junior Will McCurdy (82-224) in 40th.
The win was second-year head coach Nick Clinard's third on The Plains.
"It was a total team effort," said Clinard. "All five guys contributed and put together three strong rounds. It's a great setting to play in the final group two tournaments in a row. These are the situations that help you mature as a team. They help you weigh yourself amongst the top teams in the country and see how you are improving as a program."
Carlsson led the 60-player field wire-to-wire after opening with a first round 64. The Enenyberg, Sweden native became just the third Auburn freshman on record to earn medalist honors at a collegiate event and the first since Jimmy Green in 1988. Carlsson held off Alabama's Bobby Wyatt for the two stroke victory.
"It was pretty tight coming down the stretch," said Carlsson. "I didn't know I could play this well. There were a lot of good players here. I've worked very hard on my game. It's a great feeling to see it pay off and win an event like this."
Florida (282-836) finished second followed by Alabama (279-838), South Alabama (287-859), UNLV (294-866), Memphis (284-867), Mississippi State (290872), SMU (289-879), UAB (297-883), Southern Miss (302-897), Georgia State (305-903) and Samford (311-907).
The Tigers return to action Oct. 23-24 at the Bridgestone Intercollegiate in Greensboro, N.C. Complete results from the Jerry Pate are available via www.GolfStat.com.