Nov. 23, 2004
ATLANTA – Georgia Tech’s Nicholas Thompson, who has recorded 12 top-10 finishes in his career but never won a collegiate event, captured his first Tuesday when he outlasted Matthew Rosenfeld of Texas in a playoff to win the Western Refining College All-America Classic in El Paso, Texas.
The stroke-play event, played at the par-71, 6,817-yard El Paso Country Club, gathered 30 of the nation’s top collegiate players.
Thompson, a senior from Coral Springs, Fla., took the 36-hole lead after firing rounds of 67 in the first round Monday and 65 in the second round, which was suspended Monday and completed Tuesday. His 65 was one stroke off his career low. In the final round, Thompson shot 72 in cold, windy conditions to fall into a tie with Rosenfeld after 54 holes at 9-under-par 204, but won the playoff on the first hole.
Thompson made the green in two, lagged his putt to six feet and made par. Rosenfeld hit his drive into the trees, did not make the green on his next shot and conceded with a five-foot bogey putt awaiting him.
“It feels great, and I’m excited for what’s to come,” said Thompson, hoping to use this as a catalyst for his final spring season at Tech.
Ranked No. 13 in the nation in the latest Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index, his highest previous finish was a tie for second at the 2002 ACC Championship and the 2003 Nelson Invitational. It is the first tournament title for a Tech player since Troy Matteson won the 2003 NCAA East Regional.
Chan Song, a Tech senior from Orlando, Fla., ranked 24th in the nation, also played in the event, tying for 10th place with Luke List of Vanderbilt at 1-under-par 212. Song shot rounds of 70, 71 and 71.
The Yellow Jackets, ranked second in the nation, returns to action on early February at the Taylor Made/Waikoloa Intercollegiate on the Big Island of Hawaii.