MG: Final Results At John Hayt

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. — The Vanderbilt men’s golf team finished in a tie for 13th place Tuesday at the 2008 John Hayt Collegiate Invitational, hosted by the University of North Florida at the Sawgrass Country Club.

Despite the Commodores improving their team score by five strokes from Monday’s second round they were unable to move up the leaderboard. Vanderbilt finished at 37-over-par, locked into a tie for 13th place with 23rd-ranked UCF.

Freshman Ben Klaus shot Vanderbilt’s low score on Tuesday, an even-par 72. The Edmond, Okla., native registered personal bests with 11 pars and four birdies. Klaus placed third on the team, finishing at 13-over to stand in a tie for 56th.

Junior Jon Curran also shot his best round of the event on Tuesday. The All-American carded a two-over 74 in the event’s final round to finish in a tie for 62nd place at 15-over. Sophomore Hudson Johnson’s three-over 75 gave the Longview, Texas, native Vanderbilt low total of the week — an eight-over 224. Johnson placed in a tie for 29th in the field of 81 golfers.

Billy Whalen also scored for Vanderbilt on Tuesday. Whalen’s four-over 76 gave the senior a three-day total of 20-over 236. Sophomore Chris Rockwell, who shot Vanderbilt’s low rounds on Sunday and Monday, did not score for the Commodores on Tuesday. His seven-over 79 put him at 10-over for the tournament, in a tie for 38th place.

Now in its 17th year, the John Hayt Collegiate Invitational has grown into one of the premier events in college golf, and this year remained no exception. The “first collegiate major of the year,” the 2008 field featured eight teams ranked in the nation’s Top 25.

Fourth-ranked Alabama won the tournament by four strokes over second-ranked UCLA. Host North Florida, Tennessee and Charlotte rounded out the top five. Georgia State’s Joel Sjoholm took individual medalist honors.

Vanderbilt has next weekend off before returning to action in the Sunshine state on Sunday, March 2, at Florida State’s Seminole Intercollegiate in Tallahassee. The Commodores then travel to Hawai’i to take part in the Kauai Collegiate Cup, March 14-15.