DADE CITY, Fla. (3/6/11) – The Arkansas State men's golf team shot a final-round 293 Sunday at the USF Invitational, wrapping up the three-round tournament with a combined 867 to finish tied for fourth place among 21 teams.
The Red Wolves' 867 is their second lowest three-round score of the season behind only their 853 shot at the Sam Hall Intercollegiate played Sept. 13-14. ASU not only collected its top finish of the season, it came against a difficult field that included several teams ranked among the top in the nation.
A-State finished tied with No. 28 North Texas, in front of No. 30 UCF and just 10 strokes behind No. 52 Florida State. The Red Wolves also finished ahead of teams such as Troy, Villanova, South Florida, Louisville, Florida Atlantic, DePaul, Cincinnati, Marquette and Toledo.
ASU was tied for fifth place after posting a first-round 287, but climbed one spot into a tie for fourth after matching that total in the second round. Middle Tennessee claimed the tournament title with an 838, while Florida State finished second with an 857 and Florida Gulf Coast third with an 864.
"I am really proud of the guys and their effort at this tournament," said ASU head coach Steve Johnson. "They went toe to toe with two of the best teams in the country in Central Florida and Florida State and held their ground. Today's round would've gotten away from us last year, but instead they dug down deep and got around it."
Chris Pledger tied for fourth place, his best finish of the season, to lead Arkansas State. Pledger shot a 209 to collect his fifth top-25 finish of the year. He shot a first-round 68, which tied his lowest score of the season, before coming back to shoot a 69 for the second 18 holes and a final-round 72.
Joining Pledger among the top-25 leaders was Cory Williamson, who finished tied for 21st place with a 216. Williamson finished even-par for all three rounds, recording a 71-72-73 to pick up his fourth top-25 finish of the year.
Following Pledger and Williamson for A-State, Warren Hood finished tied for 45th place with a 222 (74-72-76), Lloyd du Preez tied for 57th with a 225 (74-79-72) and Chance Holden 97th with a 237 (81-74-82).
The Red Wolves return to action March 14-15 at the Grover Page Classic, hosted by Tennessee-Martin, in Jackson, Tenn.
ARKANSAS STATE RESULTS
Place, Name (RD1-RD2-RD3--TOTAL)
T4, Arkansas State (287-287-293--867)
T4, Chris Pledger (68-69-72--209)
T21, Cory Williamson (71-72-73--216)
T45, Warren Hood (74-72-76--222)
T57, Lloyd du Preez (74-79-72--225)
97, Chance Holden (81-74-82--237)