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Steelman Extends Lead, Tech 5th at NCAA Golf Championship

Scottsdale, Ariz. – Ross Steelman extended his lead in the medal race to four shots with a 2-under-par 68, and Georgia Tech rode three subpar rounds to post a 4-under-par 276 Sunday and settle into fifth place after 54 holes at the NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championship.

Steelman remains atop the individual leaderboard at 9-under-par 201 and has a four-stroke lead on the field heading into Monday’s final round of medal play, looking to become Georgia Tech’s second NCAA golf champion and fourth national collegiate champion in program history. His closest pursuers are North Carolina’s Dylan Menante and Ohio State’s Neal Shipley at 5-under-par 205, with Stanford’s Barclay Brown, Florida’s Fred Biondi and Illinois’ Adrien Dumont De Chassart tied for fourth place another stroke back at 206 (-4).

Troy Matteson captured the 2002 title at the Ohio State University Scarlet Course as a member of one of the four Yellow Jacket teams to finish runner-up at the NCAA Championship. Watts Gunn (1927) and Charlie Yates (1934) also won national collegiate titles when the championship was conducted at match play prior to the NCAA taking sponsorship.

Tech slipped to fifth place Sunday despite posting its best team round in 10 NCAA Championship trips around Grayhawk Golf Club. The Yellow Jackets, at 2-over-par 842, are eight strokes behind leader Illinois (834, -6), but also eight shots ahead of sixth place Stanford (850, +10) and 11 ahead of eighth place, shared by Florida State and Vanderbilt at 13-over-par 853.

The top eight teams on the leaderboard after Monday’s final round of stroke play will advance to the match play portion of the championship, and the individual champion will be crowned at the conclusion of the round. Tech has advanced to match play four times at the NCAA Championship, and is looking to do so this week for the first time since 2014 at Hutchinson, Kan.

“Obviously we just want to keep playing well, get in that top eight and make match play,” said Steelman. “From there, it’s just go out and play more golf. You’ve just got to play against who you’re standing in front of. Individually, I just want to play as boring a round as possible. A lot of fairways and a lot of greens. Pars are going to be my friend. I just want to go out and have fun again. It’s going to be my last round of medal play in college golf, so just have fun with it.”

Round 4 begins at 10 a.m. local time (1 p.m. Eastern time) Monday. Tech tees off at 10:55 a.m. local time (1:55 p.m. Eastern) Monday on the first hole, paired with fourth-place North Carolina (841, +1) and sixth-place Stanford (850, +10). The Tar Heels are the No. 2 seed in the NCAA Championship, while Stanford is the sixth seed.

Golf Channel will televise live the final round of medal play beginning at 5 p.m. Eastern time.

Ross Steelman talks about his third round and Tech's position entering Monday

TECH LINEUP – While Steelman continued to grab headlines Sunday, senior Connor Howe and freshman Hiroshi Tai quietly kept Tech in the hunt for match play.

Howe posted the best round of his career in an NCAA Championship, a 4-under-par 66 that included just one bogey and five birdies. The senior from Ogden, Utah recorded four birdies on his outgoing nine, then added one more birdie with eight pars coming in. He moved into the top 20 (tied for 17th) at even-par 210 for the championship.

Tai, a freshman from Singapore who was the ACC Championship runner-up a month ago, birdied three holes with no bogeys over his final eight holes Sunday to post a 1-under-par 69. He is tied for 55th place at 217 (+7) along with senior Bartley Forrester (Gainesville, Ga.), who counted a 73 toward the Tech score Sunday. Junior Christo Lamprecht (George, South Africa), a finalist for the Fred Haskins Award, did not count for Tech after carding a 74, and is tied for 82nd place individually at 220 (+10).

For Steelman’s part, the Columbia, Mo., senior reeled off four birdies in a six-hole span after bogeying his second hole of the round then played the second nine in level par to post his 68.

Highlights from Connor Howe's third round

TEAM LEADERBOARD – No. 3 seed Illinois (834, -6) followed their 7-under-par round Saturday with a 4-under-par 276 Sunday and took command of the team race by three shots over No. 8 Pepperdine (837, -3) who posted an 11-under-par round of 269, the best of the championship so far.

The Illini and the Waves will be in the final groups for Monday’s round with third-place Florida (839, -1), who shot 2-under-par 278 Sunday. North Carolina shot 5-under-par 275 Sunday to move into fourth place at 841 (+1), followed by the Yellow Jackets at 842 (+2) in fifth.

Eight strokes separate Tech and sixth-place Stanford (850, +10). Arizona State (851, +11), Florida State and top-seeded Vanderbilt (both at 853, +13) and Virginia (854, +14) round out the top 10 on the leaderboard. Auburn (856, +16), Texas A&M (857, +17), Alabama 861, +21) and Georgia (864, +24) also made the 54-hole cut and will play the final medal play round Monday.

Texas Tech, the No. 5 seed, and Ohio State, the No. 22 seed, finished in a tie for the 15th and final spot (866, +16) and will play off Monday morning (8 a.m. local time/11 a.m. Eastern) to determine which team moves on to the final round of medal play.

INDIVIDUAL LEADERBOARD – Tech’s Steelman is in solid position to win the individual national championship with a 9-under-par total of 201 through 54 holes, four shots clear of North Carolina’s Menante and Ohio State’s Shipley, who are tied at 205 (-5).

Another shot back at 206 (-4) are Barclay Brown of Stanford, Fred Biondi of Florida and Adrien Dumont De Chassart of Illinois. The the Illini’s Jackson Buchanan is the next closest pursuer at 3-under-par 207. Five more golfers are tied for eighth place at 208 (-2).

NCAA Championship Round 3

Photos by Tim Cowie/Todd Drexler

TECH’S NCAA CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY – Georgia Tech has reached the NCAA Championship finals 32 times since 1985 (33 times in program history), which is tied for fifth most in that time period behind Oklahoma State (36), Arizona State (35), Florida (34) and Texas (34), three of whom are in the field in Scottsdale.

The Yellow Jackets have qualified for match play four times since the advent of the stroke-play/match-play format in 2009, finishing third in 2010, second in 2011, second in 2013, fifth in 2014. Tech lost in the quarterfinals each time, except for 2013, when the Jackets lost in the semifinals. Tech lost to the eventual champion three times in its four appearances in match play – Augusta State by the score of 3-2 in the quarterfinals in 2010 and 2011 and to Alabama (3-0-2) in 2013.

Tech has been the runner-up in the NCAA Championship four times (1993, 2000, 2002 and 2005, all before the introduction of match play). Only Oklahoma State, which has 18, Texas (6) and Purdue (5) have more. The Yellow Jackets have finished in the top eight of stroke play 16 times.

In the two NCAA Championships played at Grayhawk Golf Club, Tech finished 15th in 2022 and tied for 12th last year.

Three Tech players have won national collegiate championships. Troy Matteson did it most recently in 2002 at Columbus, Ohio. Watts Gunn (1927) and Charlie Yates (1934) won national collegiate titles under a match play format before the NCAA took sponsorship of the championship in 1939.

Highlights from Ross Steelman's third round

CHAMPIONSHIP INFORMATION/FORMAT – Finals play consists of 72 holes of stroke play followed by an eight-team match play tournament. Stroke play concludes Monday, May 30 to determine the top eight teams that will advance to match play as well as the 72-hole individual champion. The team national champion will be determined by a match-play format that consists of quarterfinals and semifinals conducted on Tuesday, May 30, followed by finals on Wednesday, May 31.

The entire championship is conducted on the Raptor course at Grayhawk Golf Club in Scottsdale, Ariz., which measures 7,289 yards and plays to a par of 70. This is the last of three straight years that the Grayhawk will host the NCAA Championship. The championship moves to LaCosta Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, Calif., for the next three years (2024-26).

  • Monday, May 29 – Final round of stroke play competition (1 p.m. ET)
  • Tuesday, May 30 – Quarterfinals (9:20 a.m. ET) and semifinals (3:45 p.m. ET) of team match play
  • Wednesday, May 31 – Championship match (4:35 p.m.) to determine team champion

TELEVISION – Golf Channel will air live coverage of the final round of stroke play Monday, May 29 (5-9 p.m. Eastern time), the team quarterfinals (12-3:30 p.m. ET) and semifinals (5-9 p.m. ET) on Tuesday May 30, and the team championship match Wednesday, May 31 (5-9 p.m. ET). Encore presentations will be aired at 10 p.m. each day. Read more details here.

 


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 72 tournaments in his tenure. The Yellow Jackets have won 19 Atlantic Coast Conference Championships, made 32 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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