Match Play Results | Match Play Photos
The Commodores’ bid for their first ever national championship fell one match short on Monday afternoon, dropping a 3-2 decision to defending national champion Oregon in the NCAA Semifinals at the Rich Harvest Farms in Sugar Grove, Ill. The dramatic match came down to the fifth and final match on the 18th hole.
Vanderbilt made things interesting for the Ducks however, and a Golf Channel national viewing audience saw the two teams battle to the very end, with one match stretching to extra holes. Oregon started with a win when Oregon’s Norman Xiong defeated Patrick Martin, 3 & 2 and then added another victory when Wyndham Clark defeated Will Gordon, 4 & 3 to go up 2-0 in the match. Theo Humphrey registered Vanderbilt’s first point with a 5 & 4 win over Ryan Gronlund, and then John Augenstein won his match in 19 holes in dramatic fashion, draining a 25-foot putt from the fringe to come away with a victory over Edwin Yi in a back-and-forth affair.
The match then came down to senior Matthias Schwab against the Ducks’ Sulman Raza to determine who would face Oklahoma in the national championship match Wednesday. The match see-sawed early until Raza took a 1-up lead on number 12 and then held on the rest of the way to come away with the win for Oregon, 3-2.
“I really can’t put into words the emotions I have right now,” said Vanderbilt head coach Scott Limbaugh. “This group, the way they fight and compete, the way they represent themselves with class and integrity, I am so honored to be their coach. We have some guys hurting really badly right now because they wanted this and I certainly wanted it badly for them. Oregon is a great team and our hats go off to them. Theo was outstanding all day long and what John did on those last 4 holes is the stuff dreams are made of. We had talked a lot about if the Championship came down on someone winning, we wanted Matthias in that moment. He has delivered for us time and time again and he hit great shots down the stretch, but unfortunately we lost and that’s life. You put it all out there and you have to be willing to live with the results. We did that this week, we put it all out there and it was a blast. “
Despite the loss on Tuesday, the Commodores had quite the season in 2016-17, making their first Final Four appearance, capturing their first SEC Championship, and landing four players on All-American teams (Martin, Schwab, Augenstein, and Humphrey). Vanderbilt also spent the majority of the season number one in most major polls and in Golfstat.com.
“I know we will look back on this year knowing it was special,” said Limbaugh. “Moments like this are tough because it means so much to so many people. The support we had up here this week was phenomenal. This team played awesome and have so much to be proud of. This team changed Vanderbilt golf forever and for that all is can do is say thank you.”
Oregon 3, Vanderbilt 2
Norman Xiong defeated Patrick Martin, 3 & 2
John Augenstein defeated Edwin Yi, 1 up (19 holes)
Wyndham Clark defeated Will Gordon, 4 & 3
Theo Humphrey defeated Ryan Gronlund, 5 &4
Sulman Raza defeated Matthias Schwab, 2 up
Vanderbilt advances to first Final Four with victory over UNLV
The Commodores’ men’s golf team advanced to their first ever Final Four after knocking off UNLV, 3-2, in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championship Tuesday morning at Rich Harvest Farms Club in Sugar Grove, Ill.
The Commodores came up with some huge putts down the stretch in their quarterfinal win Tuesday to advance to play Oregon this afternoon in the semifinals. Sophomore Patrick Martin, who battled UNLV’s Taylor Montgomery in an All-Square match for most of the day, took the lead on 15, lost it on 16, but then regained it for good on 17, but not without a clutch performance by Martin to win it. Needing a birdie to halve the hole from off of the fringe, Martin drained a 20-foot putt to win his match against Montgomery.
After two wins by the Runnin’ Rebels and a win by Matthias Schwab, the match came down to junior Theo Humphrey’s match against Justin Kim. Humphrey had Kim dormied with three holes to play, but Kim extended the match on 16 and 17, and then Vanderbilt used a little luck to come away with the win on 18. Humphrey’s tee shot on 18 was heading to the trees on the right, but his ball miraculously hit the middle of a tree and then bounced back into the middle of the fairway. Humphrey laid up to around 60 yards, and then hit his third shot to within two feet of the pin. Kim also laid up and hit his third shot inside of Humphreys, but the junior from Greenwich, Conn., stepped up and sent Vanderbilt to their first appearance in the Final Four with a birdie four on the last.
Vanderbilt advances to play Oregon at 2:20 p.m. CT. Live coverage on the Golf Channel begins at 3 p.m. CT.
Vanderbilt 3, UNLV 2
Patrick Martin defeated Harry Hall (UNLV), 1-up
Taylor Montgomery (UNLV) defeated John Augenstein, 3 & 1
John Oda (UNLV) defeated Will Gordon, 6 & 5
Theo Humphrey defeated Justin Kim (UNLV), 1-up
Matthias Schwab defeated Shintaro Ban (UNLV), 4 & 2