Xander Schauffele Ties for Fourth in New Mexico
Sept. 28, 2013
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - San Diego State's Xander Schauffele (San Diego, Calif.) carded a 1-over par 73 on Saturday to finish in a tie for fourth place on the individual leaderboard following the final round of the 59th annual William H. Tucker Invitational at the University of New Mexico Championship Course. As a team, the Aztecs jumped two spots into the sixth position after recording the fourth-lowest team score of the afternoon (297) for a collective 33-over 897 on the par-72, 7,562-yard layout.
On a day when just five golfers in the field of 103 players broke par, Schauffele still managed to climb three places from the seventh spot to complete the tournament at 1-over 217. The Scripps Ranch High alumnus endured a tough morning stretch of four straight bogeys before closing strong with five pars and four birdies over his final 10 holes to secure the fourth top-five finish of his SDSU career.
Ricky DeSantis (Carlsbad, Calif.) also turned in his second straight top-20 performance for the Scarlet and Black despite dropping five places from the 11th position following a final-round 77. The Aztec freshman stumbled out of the gate with five bogeys and a double bogey, but rebounded nicely with five pars and two birdies down the stretch to tie for the 16th position at 7-over 223.
Not to be outdone, Austin Kaiser (Atascadero, Calif.) registered the biggest jump for SDSU on Saturday, vaulting from 67th into tie for 40th after matching Schauffele's team-low round of 73. Despite sinking a lone birdie, the Aztec senior played steady golf throughout the day, logging 15 pars and just two bogeys to conclude the tournament at 14-over 230.
Riccardo Michelini (Carpi, Italy) also displayed upward mobility for the Aztecs, climbing from the 86th position into a tie for 65th following a final-round 74. The SDSU sophomore avoided another erratic performance by overcoming three early bogeys with 10 pars and two birdies over a 12-hole stretch to finish with a combined 19-over 235.
Meanwhile, Kevin Ko (Coquitlam, B.C.) suffered the opposite fate, tumbling eight spots into a tie for 58th at 16-over 232 after shooting a 78 on Saturday. Despite totaling 12 pars and one birdie, the Aztec sophomore had his progress derailed by three bogeys and two double-bogeys.
SDSU was also represented by senior James Holley (Chatsworth, Calif.), an individual golfer who ended the tournament in a tie for 40th with Kaiser following a final-round 73. Despite four bogeys on his last eight holes, Holley still managed to post his lowest score of the weekend on the strength of 11 pars and a trio of birdies.
New Mexico captured both the team and individual titles on its home course. The Lobos (-1) were the lone squad amongst the 17-school field to post an aggregate red number on Saturday, firing a 7-under 281 to erase an 11-shot deficit to Arizona State (+17), which still managed to hang on to the runner-up spot after logging a 22-over 310, while USC (+23) edged UNLV (+24) for third place, followed by Brigham Young (+30) and the Aztecs (+33).
UNM's Gavin Green (-5) and Andrej Bevins (-5) completed the 54-hole tournament tied atop the leaderboard; however, Green came away with medalist honors after making birdie on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff. Meanwhile, Julien Brun of TCU (E) finished alone in third, followed by Schauffele, Brigham Young's Joe Parkinson and Zane Thomas of UNLV, who all tied for fourth at 1-over.
San Diego State will have the next two weeks off before returning to action up north for the Alister MacKenzie Invitational, Oct. 14-15, in Sonoma, Calif.
William H. Tucker Invitational Final Results UNM Championship Course Albuquerque, N.M. Par 72, 7,562 yards