The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

LSU takes title at Men's Golf Champ

2673 days ago
Steve Colquitt
Photo: Georgia Athletics

ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. --- The LSU men's golf team fired a final-round 1-over-par 281 on Sunday to claim a 3-shot victory over South Carolina and Vanderbilt in the Southeastern Conference Championship at Sea Island Golf Club's Seaside Course.

LSU finished at 13-under 827 to win the conference title for the first time since 1987 and 16th all-time. The Tigers on Sunday were paced by Stewart Jolly's 1-under 69 and even-par 70 loops by Benjamin Taylor and Zach Wright.

"It feels great to finally break through," LSU coach Chuck Winstead said. "I am just so proud of my players for the way they performed this week. The SEC has such great players and coaches, so to win a league title means so much to us. We're very happy to have come out on top this week."

Medalist honors went to South Carolina's Matthew NeSmith, who completed a wire-to-wire victory with a 3-under 67 and notched a 6-shot decision over Auburn's Ben Schlottman.

"This win means a lot to me," NeSmith said. "I played really, really well all week. The one bogey is proof of that. I never really got in any bad spots and I made a lot of putts. It was just a really fun weekend."

NeSmith also won the Gamecocks' previous tournament - Hootie at Bulls Bay - for his first collegiate title

"It was nice to get the monkey off my back to get (the first win)," NeSmith said. "That's been a huge goal of mine for a really long time. Once you do it once, you just kind of get into a rhythm. You continue to play well and strike the ball well."

For LSU, Jolly came in fourth individually at 5-under 205, while Wright was sixth at 4-under 206 and Brandon Pierce was ninth at 3-under 207.

"It's huge for us," said Jolly, who closed Sunday with an eagle on the par-5 15th and a birdie on the par-3 17th. "I could not be prouder of my teammates. We've had a good year and this makes it a great year. I couldn't be happier. It's great that we all put it together when it mattered most. This is an awesome feeling."

The highlights show from the SEC Championship will air Wednesday, April 29, at 10 p.m. on the SEC Network.

On May 5, collegiate teams will learn their destination for an NCAA Regional that will be held at one of six sites May 14-16. The top five schools from each regional will advance to the NCAA Championships May 29-June 3 in Bradenton, Fla.