AUBURN, Ala. — Gordon Sargent fired a 1-under-par 71 Monday to help keep the top-ranked Vanderbilt men’s golf team in contention on the opening day of the NCAA Auburn Regional.
Sargent’s round, his 28th this season at or below par, featured back-to-back birdies on Nos. 7 and 8 to go along with a four on the 571-yard 16th hole. He ended the opening day of the event in a tie for sixth in the individual standings.
Matthew Riedel and Reid Davenport carded a 73 and 74, respectively, and are both among the top 30 individually after 18 holes, while William Moll recorded a 76 and Cole Sherwood shot a 78. The five Dores combined to post 10 birdies after the turn, with each playing the back nine at even par or better highlighted by Riedel at 3 under and Sherwood at 2 under.
With a 294 total, the Commodores are tied with Ohio State for fifth among the 13 teams in the field in the team standings. The top five programs after 54 holes will move on to the NCAA Championships.
“I was really pleased with how we competed on the back nine as guys stepped up and made some plays, which was big,” head coach Scott Limbaugh said. “Obviously, we got off to a bad start on the front nine and just had a hard time getting any momentum. There is always a stretch of holes during a tournament when things are a little off and you have to learn to handle it. I thought today we didn’t manage it as well as we needed to and that was a little disappointing. However, the resilience and competitive character of this team showed up on the back nine.”
Chattanooga leads after the first day of the regional with a 283 total, two shots ahead of Colorado State. Auburn and TCU are both two strokes ahead of the Commodores and Buckeyes. Christoph Bleier of Colorado State and Chattanooga’s John Houk share the individual lead after both finishing the opening round with a 4-under-par 68.
“Now we need to take the momentum we finished with today into the round tomorrow. It’s an important day and we need to embrace that,” said Limbaugh. “This time of year is about having all five guys locked in, having fun, being committed, and trusting themselves. We know we can do hard things and we need to be ready to go from the start. Thanks to our fans who came out today, we need more these next few days and need them cheering on the guys.”
The second of three rounds at the regional will get underway at Tuesday at 8 a.m., with the Dores teeing off beginning at 8:30 a.m. on the 10th hole with Ohio State and TCU. Live scoring for the event can be found HERE.
Commodores Mourn Wilt’s Passing
Lucianne Wilt, the wife of founding president of The Golf Club of Tennessee Toby Wilt, passed away prior to Vandy teeing off in the Auburn Regional. Limbaugh and the Commodores appreciated the leadership and dedication Wilt—the co-chair of the USGA Women’s Amateur in 2018—always displayed. In addition to her support of golf, Wilt chaired the Boards of several organizations including the Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital.