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Jackets Win Medal Play at ACC Golf Championship

Pinehurst, N.C. – Georgia Tech blistered the Country Club of North Carolina course to the tune of 13-under-par Sunday and ran away with first place in the stroke-play portion of the Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s Golf Championship. Meanwhile, freshman Hiroshi Tai forced a tie for the individual title before falling on the third playoff hole, earning runner-up honors.

Tech, which shot 26-under-par 838 for the tournament, earned the top seed in the match play bracket and will face Duke (860, -4) in one semifinal match Sunday afternoon as it bids for its 19th all-time ACC men’s golf championship. Wake Forest, which finished 15 shots behind the Yellow Jackets at 10-under-par 854, is the No. 2 seed and will face No. 3 Virginia (860, -4). The matches were scheduled to begin at 3:30 p.m.

The winners of the semifinal matches will face off for the championship at 9 a.m. Monday.

Four Yellow Jackets finished among the top 11 individuals, led by Tai, who posted a 9-under-par score of 207 for 54 holes after firing a 4-under-par 68 in the final round. He made an eagle at the last hole to tie Wake Forest’s Michael Brennan for first place, forcing a playoff that lasted three holes. The players battled at the 18 hole three times, each making birdie the first two times before Tai put his second shot in the left-hand bunker on the third try. He was unable to get up-and-down while Brennan two-putted for birdie and earned medalist honors.

Connor Howe, with a final-round 6-under-par 66, tied for third place individually at 209 (-7), while Christo Lamprecht tied for ninth place at 212 (-4), Ross Steelman tied for 11th at 213 (-3), and Bartley Forrester tied for 23rd at 218 (+2).

Tech has finished fifth, second and now first, respectively, in the three years the stroke play/match play format has been used to determine the ACC Champion. The Jackets won their semifinal match over Florida State last year and lost, 3-2, to Wake Forest in the championship match at Panama City Beach, Fla.

TECH LINEUP – Howe had the hot hand for the Yellow Jackets Sunday, making five straight birdies at one point on the front nine and eight altogether for his round. The senior from Ogden, Utah posted his highest career ACC Championship finish while leading the Yellow Jackets to a 13-under-par score of 275 for the round.

Tai continued his stellar play in the tournament, making just one bogey along with three birdies and the closing eagle for his 68. The freshman from Singapore, who won two tournaments in the fall, came up short in his bid to become only the second Yellow Jacket freshman to win an ACC title (Cameron Tringale in 2006).

Lamprecht birdied four holes and posted a closing 2-under-par 70, while Forrester shot 1-under-par 71 to deliver the Jackets’ other two counting scores in the final round. Steelman posted a closing even-par 72.

Hiroshi Tai finished regulation tied for first place but lost a playoff on for medalist honors to Wake Forest’s Michael Brennan. (photo by Andy Mead)

 

TEAM LEADERBOARD – Georgia Tech and Wake Forest were never in jeopardy of missing match play in Sunday’s competition. The battle for the third and fourth spots came down to Florida State, Duke and Virginia, who began the day 3-4-5 on the leaderboard. The Cavaliers shot 4-under-par 284 Sunday, and the Blue Devils shot 1-under-par 287 to tie finish 54 holes tied for third place at 860 (-4), while the Seminoles couldn’t keep up after posting a 2-over-par 290 in the final round to finish fifth at 862 (-2).

INDIVIDUAL LEADERBOARD – Brennan, who had gotten to 10-under-par for the tournament and led by three shots at one point, made bogeys at 14 and 16 to allow Tai and two others within a stroke as the round came to the final hole.

Tech’s Howe, Duke’s Luke Semple, Virginia’s Ben James were already in the clubhouse at 7-under-par 209 as Brennan and Tai played the 18th hole. Both players reached the par-5 in two shots, but Tai put his second shot about 10 feet above the hole and rolled in his putt for eagle, while Brennan two-putted for birdie to force the playoff.

TOURNAMENT INFORMATION – The ACC Championship is being contested in the state of North Carolina for the first time since 2019, when Georgia Tech won its most recent title at the Old North State Club in New London, N.C., which has hosted the championship 22 times. This is the eighth time that Pinehurst has played host to the ACC Men’s Golf Championship and the second time at the Country Club of North Carolina, which first hosted in 1966. Last year’s event was held at Shark’s Tooth Golf Course at Watersound Club in Panama City, Fla., preceded by the 2021 championship at the Capital City Club’s Crabapple Course in Milton, Ga. Next year’s championship will be held at the Charlotte (N.C.) Country Club.

The course plays to a par of 72 and measures 7,301 yards for the ACC Championship, which is being conducted for the third time under a combination stroke play/match play format Friday through Monday. The championship used the traditional 54-hole, stroke-play format from 1980 to 2019 (the championship was not held in 2020 due to COVID-19). All 12 competing teams (Miami, Pittsburgh and Syracuse do not sponsor men’s golf) will play 54 holes of stroke play, 36 holes Friday and 18 holes Saturday, with the standard low four individual rounds counting toward the team’s daily score each round. The top four teams after 54 holes are seeded in a match play bracket, with the semi-final matches to take place Sunday, and the championship match Monday. Each match will be 18 holes and involve all five players from each team. The format is similar to the way the NCAA Championship has been conducted every year since 2009.

BROADCAST INFORMATION – Sunday’s semifinal matches and Monday’s championship match will be streamed live on the ACC Network Extra platform, available on the ESPN app.

Sunday, April 23, 2023 

  • Semifinal Match Play Tee Times (Off #1 and #10)
  • Championship Team Match Play Lineup Announcements at Conclusion of Play

Monday, April 24, 2022 

  • 9:00 a.m. – 9:48 a.m. Championship Match Play Tee Times (All off #1)
  • Team Champion Awards Ceremony at Conclusion of Play

 


Alexander-Tharpe Fund

The Alexander-Tharpe Fund is the fundraising arm of Georgia Tech athletics, providing scholarship, operations and facilities support for Georgia Tech’s 400-plus student-athletes. Be a part of developing Georgia Tech’s Everyday Champions and helping the Yellow Jackets compete for championships at the highest levels of college athletics by supporting the Annual Athletic Scholarship Fund, which directly provides scholarships for Georgia Tech student-athletes. To learn more about supporting the Yellow Jackets, visit atfund.org.

ABOUT GEORGIA TECH GOLF

Georgia Tech’s golf team is in its 28th year under head coach Bruce Heppler, winning 70 tournaments in his tenure. The Yellow Jackets have won 18 Atlantic Coast Conference Championships, made 29 appearances in the NCAA Championship and been the national runner-up four times. Connect with Georgia Tech Golf on social media by liking their Facebook page, or following on Twitter (@GTGolf) and Instagram. For more information on Tech golf, visit Ramblinwreck.com.

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