TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (March 15, 2015) – ETSU junior Gudmundur Kristjansson (Reykjavik, Iceland) capped off a wire-to-wire win as the Buccaneer captured his first collegiate victory on Sunday afternoon at the Seminole Intercollegiate.
Kristjansson, who tied an ETSU single-round record with a 63 on Friday, held off a valiant comeback by Florida State’s Jack Maguire and South Carolina’s Will Starke to earn medalist honors after finishing with a 54-hole score of 17-under-par 199 (63-67-69) at the Southwood Golf Course.
The Reykjavik, Iceland native entered Sunday’s final round with a seven-shot lead over Starke – the No. 11 ranked golfer by Golfstat – and defeated Maguire by three strokes and Starke by four. Maguire was playing ahead of Kristjansson and eventually pulled within a shot of the leader, but the ETSU junior held off the 22nd-ranked golfer by birdying two of his final three holes en route to carding a 3-under 69 on Sunday.
“This has been an amazing weekend and it feels good to win this tournament,” said Kristjansson, who totaled 17 birdies and one eagle on the weekend. “I putted really well today and made a 25-foot birdie putt on No. 18. I wasn’t aware of how close (Jack) Maguire was since he was playing ahead. I was focused on my play and making shots. I made some good up and downs on No. 15 and 16, and was fortunate to make some big putts down the stretch.”
Kristjansson’s birdie putt on No. 18 moved ETSU past No. 8 South Carolina for a second-place finish. The Bucs finished ahead of three top-10 programs - No. 4 Georgia Tech, No. 8 South Carolina and No. 8 South Florida - while nine of the teams in the field ranked in the top 50 nationally.
The 41st-ranked Buccaneers began the day with a two-shot lead over the Gamecocks, however, it was tournament host Florida State who rallied for the win. The second-ranked Seminoles fired a 17-under 271 on Sunday and finished the tournament at 21-under-par 843.
ETSU shot 6-under 282 in the final round and ended the three-day tournament at 18-under-par 846. As a group, the Bucs tallied 52 birdies and tied with South Carolina for the most eagles with three.
“I am really proud of Gudmundur,” said head coach Fred Warren. “He played a great tournament. It’s a challenge to play with the lead and he was facing a strong field. I am also equally proud of our team as a whole. Florida State got out to a strong start and played great today. I commend them on their win and hopefully we can build off this weekend.”
Junior Adrian Meronk (Wroclaw, Poland) had two of ETSU’s three eagles on the weekend and finished sixth at 8-under-par 208 (71-67-70). Meronk played the front nine at even-par on Sunday and recorded his second eagle of the tournament on the par-5, 541-yard 16th to finish the round at 2-under 70.
Meanwhile, sophomore Mateusz Gradecki (Oborniki Slakie, Poland) finished on a positive note as he fired a 4-under 68 in the final round and tied for 34th at even-par 216 (71-77-68).
The Bucs return to action at the Mason Rudolph Championship, which will be held April 3-5 in Franklin, Tenn.
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