BLUFFTON, S.C. – Sophomore Sam Weatherhead battled back to win his first collegiate tournament, rallying from being tied for fifth after the first two rounds, to tie for first at the Colleton River Collegiate in Bluffton, S.C. Tuesday’s action was played on the Dye Course.
“Just really proud of Sam. What a way to get his first career win, just pretty much through toughness and guts. He had to dig hard on the last hole to par for the win. It was a good week for him,” MSU head coach Casey Lubahn said.
As a team, Michigan State finished third with a 19-over par 883 (290-295-298). Tennessee won the team title with an 8-over 872 (286-289-297), while Miami (Ohio) held on for second place with a 16-over 880 (293-290-297). The Spartans maintained their position after finishing third after the first 36 holes.
“Charlie was defending his individual title from last season. He put together a few good rounds. Overall as a team, we were just very inefficient. That cost us a chance to win the event. I think we are doing a lot of good things, but if we are going to improve and really maximize our scores; we are going to have be much more efficient,” Lubahn said.
Weatherhead is the second-straight Spartan to capture at least a share of the Colleton River Collegiate title, as sophomore Charlie Netzel won last season. Finishing with a 2-under 214 (71-72-71), Weatherhead tie with Boston College’s John Jackopsic who played as an individual. Netzel had another strong showing at the tournament, finishing tied for fourth with a 2-over 218 (68-76-74).
Playing as an individual, senior Jon Finley was tied for 17th. Junior Mitch Rutledge continued to recover from a rough start yesterday finishing tied for 23rd with an 8-over 224. After opening the tournament with a 77, he finished with a 73 and 74, respectively. Sophomore Gareth Lappin finished tied for 36th with a 12-over 228 (74-74-80), while freshman Michael Sharp was tied for 61st with a 20-over 236 (78-79-79).
Weatherhead and Netzel led the tournament with 12 birdies apiece, while freshman A.J. Varekois had 11. Rutledge added 10 birdies.
“It is such an honor to host at such a prestigious place like Colleton River. The staff and the volunteers and everybody, really put Michigan State University’s best foot forward. It is all because of the generosity of the club and in particular one Spartan alum Al Thiess and his wife, Willa, who have been just incredible all week. It is just a great start to our spring trip,” Lubahn said.
The Spartans continue their spring season on March 15-16 at the Talis Park Challenge in Naples, Fla. Fans can follow live results at www.birdiefire.com.