Loupe Fourth at SEC's; Tiger Golfer Fifth
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – On the strength of his 1-under par 69 in the final round, LSU junior Andrew Loupe fired a 54-hole score of 3-under 207 to finish in a tie for fourth place on the leader board and lead the 23rd-ranked LSU men’s golf team to a fifth-place finish in the team race at the 2010 SEC Men’s Golf Championships.
The Tigers wrapped up the 2009-10 regular season by earning their second-straight top-five finish at the SEC Championships after finishing in a tie for fourth place in the event a year ago.
LSU posted a 5-over 285 in Sunday’s final round at the Seaside Course at Sea Island Golf Club to finish in fifth place overall with a three-round score of 16-over 856.
The Georgia Bulldogs successfully defended their SEC championship from last spring, earning an impressive five-shot victory over both the Florida Gators and Ole Miss Rebels with a 4-over 844 for the weekend. After finishing runner-up to Georgia in the final team standings in 2009, the Arkansas Razorbacks took fourth place this weekend with a team score of 13-over 853.
“We’re certainly disappointed in our finish this weekend,” said LSU head coach Chuck Winstead. “While the competition at the SEC Championship is outstanding, we hold ourselves to the highest of standards. Our play this weekend simply was not our best. We expect more across the board.”
Loupe became the second LSU golfer in as many seasons to finish among the top-five finishers in the field while improving upon his best career finish from last season when he tied for 21st place.
The Baton Rouge native got off to a bit of a slow start in the final round as he quickly made a pair of bogeys on the par-four first and par-four fourth holes. He then made the turn at 1-over for his round with back-to-back birdies on the par-three sixth and par-five seventh holes before making a bogey at the par-four ninth. Loupe proceeded to play a bogey-free back nine that included birdies at the par-four 10th and par-three 17th holes en route to a 1-under 69 on the day.
Loupe has made a strong case for All-SEC and All-America honors throughout the season as he is the team leader with four top-five, five top-10 and seven top-20 finishes on the campaign. He is also the team’s leading scorer with an average of 72.09 strokes per round after this week’s events.
Loupe finished the tournament three shots behind Georgia’s Russell Henley and South Carolina’s George Bryan VI on the leader board as each fired matching scores of 6-under 204. Henley captured SEC medalist honors in a sudden-death playoff with a birdie on the second playoff hole.
Sophomore Sang Yi matched Loupe with a 1-under 69 in the final round as he finished in a tie for 44th place in the individual standings at 12-over par 222.
After opening the championship with a 12-over 82 in Friday’s first round, Yi finished the final 36 holes at even par with a 1-over 71 on Saturday and a 1-under 69 on Sunday.
“I’m very pleased with Andrew’s play this weekend, and Sang posted some good scores for us in the last two rounds,” Winstead said. “I believe it was a very positive tournament for Andrew. The Seaside Course is a short golf course, which negates his length off the tee. But he stayed patient, stuck to his game plan and played some outstanding golf in the nation’s top conference tourney.”
After finishing in sole possession of third place at the SEC Championships as a sophomore a year ago, junior All-American John Peterson carded a 4-over 74 in the final round to finish the week in a tie for 32nd place overall with a 54-hole score of 8-over 218.
Sophomore Austin Gutgsell finished in a tie for 38th place at 10-over 220 in his first appearance at the SEC Championships, including a 3-over 73 during Sunday’s action, while fellow sophomore Josh Jones finished in 49th position with a three-round total of 13-over 223.
The 2010 SEC Men’s Golf Championships is scheduled for a tape-delay broadcast on Wednesday evening at 5 p.m. CT as part of SEC Weekly on ESPNU.
After returning to Baton Rouge, the Tigers will await an at-large berth in NCAA Regional play. It will be announced by the NCAA Selection Committee on Monday, May 10, at 5 p.m. CT.
Six NCAA Regionals will be held from May 20-22 on the following courses: the Yale University Golf Course (New Haven, Conn.), Capital City Club (Alpharetta, Ga.), The Warren Golf Course (South Bend, Ind.), The Traditions Club (College Station, Texas), Carlton Oaks Golf Course (San Diego, Calif.) and Gold Mountain Golf Club (Bremerton, Wash.).
SEC MEN’S GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPS – FINAL ROUND RESULTS
TEAM SCORES (Par 840)
1. Georgia 283-277-284 – 844 +4; T2. Florida 280-292-277 – 849 +9; T2. Ole Miss 288-284-277 – 849 +9; 4. Arkansas 278-286-289 – 853 +13; 5. LSU 283-288-285 – 856 +16; 6. Kentucky 296-276-285 – 857 +17; 7. Auburn 280-292-287 – 859 +19; 8. Tennessee 283-285-293 – 861 +21; 9. South Carolina 282-288-294 – 864 +24; 10. Vanderbilt 284-298-285 – 867 +27; 11. Mississippi State 282-292-301 – 875 +35; 12. Alabama 297-289-292 – 878 +38.
TOP 10 INDIVIDUALS (Par 210)
T1. George Bryan IV, South Carolina, 70-66-68 – 204 -6; T1. Russell Henley, Georgia, 70-67-67 – 204 -6; 3. Jonathan Randolph, Ole Miss, 69-68-69 – 206 -4; T4. Andrew Loupe, LSU, 70-68-69 – 207 -3; T4. Hunter Hamrick, Alabama, 69-67-71 – 207 -3; T6. Ben Fuqua, Kentucky, 73-68-67 – 208 -2; T6. Bank Vongvanij, Florida, 70-72-66 – 208 -2; T8. Bryden Macpherson, Georgia, 67-71-71 – 209 -1; T8. Brad Mason, Mississippi State, 71-71-67 – 209 -1; T10. Harris English, Georgia, 73-68-69 – 210 E; T10. David Lingmerth, Arkansas, 70-69-71 – 210 E.