FRANKLIN, Tenn. – The No. 4 Vanderbilt men’s golf team claimed their second consecutive Mason Rudolph Championship and their fifth in the last seven years on Sunday with a final total of 29-under par 823 (284-269-270), 17 shots better than runner-up Liberty.
Three Commodores finished in the top five individually, with senior Patrick Martin leading the way with a second-place finish and final score of 203 (70-67-66). Junior John Augenstein finished in a tie for third with a total of 205 (68-70-67). Senior Will Gordon finished the tournament with a 206 (73-63-70), which earned him a tie for fifth.
Additionally, sophomore Harrison Ott also finished in a tie for 15th with a total of 210 (73-69-68) and freshman Reid Davenportclosed with a final-round 69 in route to a 216 (75-72-69).
The 17-shot victory looked improbable after Friday’s first round when the Commodores were in a tie for 10th place, 15 shots back of leader Tennessee. However, a 15-under 269 on Saturday and 14-under 270 on Sunday catapulted the home-standing Vanderbilt team to the convincing win. In the last two days, Vanderbilt’s worst counting score was a 1-under-par 70, which happened on Saturday. On Sunday, all four counting scores were in the 60’s, with Martin’s 66 leading the way.
“I am really happy right now and proud of this team,” said Vanderbilt head coach Scott Limbaugh, who won his fifth Mason Rudolph Championship as Commodore head coach. “That was an awesome performance this weekend and one we can all be proud of. Today was the toughest day with some rain and wind and for all five of our guys to shoot in the 60’s says a lot about how much they wanted to finish this tournament the right way. It was a total team effort. The guys really battled and we were fortunate to get off to a really good start. We had a long delay and things got tough, but we hung in there and really finished strong. Patrick was really solid this week and it was great seeing him play that well in his final Mason. John was bogey-free today which was so good and he’s taking really good steps. I am really excited about Harrison and how he responded to us challenging him Friday. He’s getting better each time out. Gordo is playing at such a high level and the way he battled after his first 11 holes of the tournament really was awesome! Reid was good today too and he’s getting closer to playing to his potential.”
The Commodores dominated the overall team stats, leading the field in par-three scoring (3.00), par-four scoring (3.99), and birdies (68). Martin and Gordon tied for the individual lead in birdies with 17. Augenstein finished fourth in birdies with 14.
Individually, Western Kentucky’s Billy Tom Sargent won medalist honors with a final score of 201 (69-65-67), which was just better than Martin’s 203 and Augenstein’s 205.
“This was a fun win and we are going to enjoy it,” said Limbaugh. “I told the guys that you never take winning for granted and that I am proud of how they responded to adversity after the first round. I also told them there are some things we have to clean up and do better and that’s where our focus will be heading into our final tournament before championship season begins.”
Vanderbilt heads to the Old Waverly Collegiate Championship next week for their final regular season tournament of the year.
“This was a great weekend and I am so thankful to everyone that helped make it so wonderful,” said Limbaugh. “It is always really special to have all of our guys’ families in town. The staff at Legends, our volunteers, and all our people at Vanderbilt really did so much to help us run a first-class event.”
Mason Rudolph Championship Final Results
1. Vanderbilt – 284-269-270=823
2. Patrick Martin – 70-67-66=203
T3. John Augenstein – 68-70-67=205
T5. Will Gordon – 73-63-70=206
T15. Harrison Ott – 73-69-68=210
T42. Reid Davenport – 75-72-69=216
17. Vanderbilt B – 294-301=595
T61. Andrew Jacobe – 73-73-75=221
T69. Luke Zieman – 75-74-74=223
T79. Michael Shears – 71-76-79=226
T81. Mason Greenberg – 75-78-74=227