Sophomore Greg Eason claimed medalist honors as the No. 20 UCF men’s golf team finished second Tuesday at the Conference USA Championship at the Texarkana Country Club. Despite strong second and final rounds, the Knights came up just short in their attempt to claim their fourth-straight league title.
With a score of 861 (-3) for the tournament, the Knights finished two strokes behind first-place Memphis. UCF got off to a slow start at the event, and was in fourth after the opening round. The team recovered to post an impressive finish at the championship.
“I couldn’t be more proud of the guys,” UCF head coach Bryce Wallor said. “They never give up. All season long, we have played great final rounds. We are playing well enough to win tournaments, but it just hasn’t happened the last few weeks.”
Eason posted a 70 (-2) on the final 18 to finish at 8-under 208. Memphis’ Jack Belote and SMU’s Max Buckley finished one-stroke behind Eason. Like the previous two rounds, Eason capitalized on the back nine with a 32 (-4). His score was aided by an eagle on the 12th hole. Eason has experienced great success in both appearances at the C-USA Championship, as he finished in second last year.
“Greg played some fantastic golf. I credit him for really working on his mental game. He had some slow starts, but made so many birdies on the last four holes all three rounds,” Wallor said.
“I did seem to play better on the back nine,” Eason said. “I managed to keep going. It was nice to have patience on the course. It was something that I was lacking a bit in the past, but it was nice to see that.”
Sophomores Ricardo Gouveia and Kyle Wilshire finished near the top of the leaderboard. Gouveia’s 215 (-1) allowed him finish eighth. Wilshire’s consistent play enabled him to finish ninth. Dating back to last year’s tournament, Wilshire has shot a 72 (E) in five-consecutive rounds.
Senior Brad Schneider shot a 73 (+1) on the day. He benefitted from posting four-consecutive birdies, a streak that started on the ninth hole.
With a 73 (+1) on the day, Jose Joia tallied his best round of the C-USA Championship.
UCF began Tuesday three shots behind Memphis and carded a 287 (-1) during the final round.
The Knights will be hoping for an at-large bid to the NCAA Regionals. Regional play begins May 17 and the field will be announced in early May.
Conference USA Championship – Tuesday Final Round – Par 72
1) Memphis -5 (282-289-288–859)
2) UCF -3 (290-284-287–861)
3) East Carolina +5 (295-287-287–869)
T4) UAB +9 (292-291-290–873)
T4) SMU +9 (284-300-289–874)
1) Greg Eason (UCF) -8 (70-68-70–208)
T2) Jack Belote (Houston) -7 (68-71-70–209)
T2) Max Buckley (SMU) -7 (68-72-69–209)
3) Martin Simonsen (UTEP) -4 (72-67-73–212)
T5) Jonathan Fly (Memphis) -2 (69-73-72–214)
T5) Bosten Miller (Marshall) -2 (72-71-71–214)
T5) Roman Robledo (Houston) -2 (70-68-76–214)
1) Greg Eason -8 (70-68-70–208)
8) Ricardo Gouveia -1 (72-71-72–215)
9) Kyle Wilshire E (72-72-72–216)
T24) Brad Schneider +6 (76-73-73–222)
T27) Jose Joia +7 (76-74-73–223)