Fresh off a win in the ACC tournament, the No. 2 ranked Tech golf team travelled to Stillwater, Okla. to compete in the NCAA championships. The week kicked off with Tech leading after the first and second rounds. But after a few tricky holes on the final day, the Jackets finished second in stroke play, giving the UCLA Bruins the top seed in match play.
Tech went into match play on June 3 with the No. 2 seed in the tournament, facing the No. 7 seeded Augusta State Jaguars. Eventually, Tech fell 3-2 in match play for the second straight year to Augusta State. The Jaguars eventually went on to win the national title. Despite the loss, Tech played a strong weekend of golf in its 24th NCAA tournament appearance in 26 years.
The Jackets started the day off with a win by senior John-Tyler Griffin, who took a 3 and 2 win over Augusta State’s Henrik Norlander. However, shortly afterward, senior James White stumbled against Patrick Reed in a 3 and 2 loss. The day was tied at 1-1 early, with the other matches determining who would progress into the next round.
Senior Paul Haley took an early threehole lead over his opponent Carter Newman through the first four holes. Newman managed to regain his composure and rally through the 17th hole, where he tied the game.
Haley hit a bogey on the 18th hole, and Newman responded with a birdie to secure the Jaguar’s second point of the day.
Immediately afterward, senior Kyle Scott bogeyed the 17th hole to fall a hole behind his opponent Mitchell Krywulycz. Scott could not recover on the 18th hole with both players hitting birdies, giving Augusta State their third and final point of the day.
Sophomore Richard Werenski gave the Jackets their second point in a down to the wire match that finished on the 19th hole. Werenski struggled early, but closed out the day strong, despite the Jaguars securing the victory before his match was over.
Even with the loss, Tech played well throughout the season, finishing not only No. 2 in the Golfweek/Sagarin Ratings, but also ranked in the top five in the nation in the GCAA Coaches poll. The Jackets look to continue their strong play into next year, despite losing several seniors.