Franklin, TN (ASU) – The Arkansas State men's golf team concluded play at the Mason Rudolph Championship on Sunday with its best performance of the three-day tournament, shooting a third-round 287 and finishing in 11th place among 17 teams with a combined 870.
Three of A-State's five competing golfers either tied or posted their lowest score of the tournament on Sunday, including Chris Pledger with a season-best 68 that also matched the lowest score on the team through its first two tournaments this year. Pledger ended with a three-under 210 that placed him a team-best tied for seventh, marking the second time this year he has picked up a top-10 finish.
The Red Wolves opened competition at the tournament Friday with a first-round 293 that left them in 11th place, and they remained in that position after recording a 290 for the second 18 holes played Saturday.
A-State finished only one stroke behind 10th-place Mississippi State and finished one place ahead of South Alabama, one of the two other Sun Belt Conference teams competing. Memphis, which ASU defeated in its season-opening tournament, won the championship with a combined 842.
"I thought we played pretty well overall," said ASU head coach Steve Johnson. "Everyone hit the ball well, we just weren't making many putts and I think some of our guys got a little frustrated because it sometimes carried into the rest of their game. It wasn't a bad tournament for us, we just have to start shooting more scores in the 60's and I definitely think our best rounds are ahead of us."
Chance Holden carded a third-round 72, which tied his lowest score of the tournament, and followed Pledger in the standings in a tie for 37th place with a 218. Lloyd du Preez posted his lowest score of the tournament on Sunday as well, shooting a 70 that helped him climb from 66th place after the first round to a tie for 41st place in the final standings with a combined 219.
Wessel Zwiegers shot a final-round 77 and ended the tournament tied for 62nd place with a 224, while Cory Williamson finished in 81st place with a 229.
Pledger ranked fifth in par-3 scoring and fourth in par-4 scoring while recording 38 pars and 10 birdies for the tournament. du Preez tied Pledger for the most birdies on the team, while Zwiegers was responsible for ASU's only eagle. Zwiegers also posted 37 pars, the second most on the team.
"I am obviously happy to see Chris (Pledger) play well again," said Johnson. "He has yet to shoot over par this season and definitely has a good streak going. I was also glad to see Lloyd improve as the tournament progressed, and all our guys did some good things at times."
The Red Wolves return to action Oct. 4-5 at the Squire Creek Intercollegiate, hosted by Louisiana Tech at the Squire Creek Country Club in Ruston, La.
ARKANSAS STATE RESULTS
Place, Name (RD1-RD 2-RD 3--TOTAL)
11, Arkansas State (293-290-287--870)
T7, Chris Pledger (71-71-68--210)
T37, Chance Holden (72-74-72--218)
T41, Lloyd du Preez (76-73-70--219)
T62, Wessel Zwiegers (74-73-77--224)