NCAA Golf News

Tech Knocks off Illinois in NCAA Golf Quarterfinals – Men’s Golf — Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Tech Knocks off Illinois in NCAA Golf Quarterfinals – Men's Golf — Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets

Carlsbad, Calif. – Georgia Tech got match victories from Bartley Forrester, Aidan Tran and Hiroshi Tai Tuesday morning and upended top-seeded Illinois, 3-1, sending the Yellow Jackets into the semifinals of the NCAA Men’s Division I Golf Championship.

Tech take on No. 5 seed Florida State, a 3-1 winner over No. 4 North Carolina, at 4:15 p.m. Eastern time Tuesday afternoon. Golf Channel will provide live coverage beginning at 6 p.m.

The Fighting Illini, who won the team stroke-play title by 16 shots over 72 holes, remained hot in the early going of Tuesday’s contest, leading four of the five matches early and three of them at the turn. But Tech began to chip away.

Forrester delivered the Yellow Jackets’ first point, a 3&1 victory over Tyler Goecke in the lead match after falling behind two holes early. He rallied to take a 1-hole lead with a birdie at the par-3 8th, and the match went back and forth until the Tech senior from Gainesville, Ga., won three straight holes with pars at 15, 16 and 17. He is now 4-0 in NCAA match play.

Tran, who replaced All-American Christo Lamprecht in the Tech lineup for the last 54 holes of stroke play, delivered for the Yellow Jackets Tuesday with a 3&2 victory over Piercen Hunt. The sophomore from Fresno, Calif., never trailed in the penultimate match, taking the lead for good with a birdie at the 8th hole. He built his lead to three holes and closed out Hunt with a par and a half at the 16th hole.

It was left for NCAA individual champion Tai, to clinch the contest for Tech in the anchor match. The sophomore from Singapore battled back to knot the match with a birdie at the 10th. He won 12, 13 and 14, all par 4s, in succession to lead by three, then closed out the match at 16 when his tee shot hit the flag and settle less than three feet from the cup.

“I’m proud of our guys,” said head coach Bruce Heppler. “We played the back nine (well). We have played the front really well and (Illinois) made some birdies to put us behind. But we played the back better, especially the 12th hole (a par 3). We won three or four holes there and got us back into it. We hit some great shots coming in. Hiroshi’s iron play has been phenomenal, and Aidan Tran played great.”

Recap of Tech semifinal win over Illinois

In the other two matches, freshman Carson Kim (Yorba Linda, Calif.) fell to Max Herendeen, 5&4. Freshman Kale Fontenot (Lafayette, La.) nearly erased a four-hole deficit, rallying to within a single hole…


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