AWENDAW, S.C. (March 28, 2023) – It was a historic week for the ETSU men’s golf team.
The Buccaneers defended their Hootie at Bulls Bay crown as ETSU set a new tournament record with a 40-under-par 824 (269-279-276) en route to winning by seven shots over New Mexico on Tuesday from the Bulls Bay Golf Club in Awendaw, South Carolina.
After tying the lowest round in program history with a 19-under-par 269 on Sunday, the Blue & Gold continued making new marks on the course. On Monday, ETSU set a new 36-hole school record after sitting at 28-under-par 548, while the Bucs capped things off with the 54-hole record on Tuesday. The previous 36-hole record was 27-under-par 549, set at the 2018 Bank of Tennessee Intercollegiate, while the 54-hole score was 39-under-par 825, set at last year’s Southern Conference Championship.
With the win, ETSU has now made it back-to-back tournament victories as the Bucs claimed the title two weeks ago at the General Hackler Championship in Myrtle Beach. The last time the Blue & Gold won back-to-back tournament titles came in the spring of 2021 when ETSU secured wins at the SoCon Championship and the NCAA Regional in Cle Elum, Washington. This now marks the eighth tournament win for the Bucs under head coach Jake Amos – who took over the program in 2019-20.
ETSU also became the fourth different team to win back-to-back titles at the Hootie at Bulls Bay – joining the likes of South Carolina (2015-17), LSU (2010-11) and Wake Forest (2006-07). The team score of 824 also set a new tournament record, breaking the 835 held by Augusta State in 2009 where Coach Amos finished tied for 11th during his junior season.
Over the three-day tournament, the Bucs totaled three eagles, a tournament-best 69 birdies and 165 pars. ETSU also led the 15-team field in par-3 scoring (E), par-4 scoring (-12) and par-5 scoring (-30).
Rounding out the top five team finishers this week were NC State (3rd, -32), No. 40 Purdue (4th, -30) and No. 47 Missouri (5th, -26).
ETSU was led by Algot Kleen (Fiskebackskil, Sweden) as he finished tied for fourth at 12-under-par 204, marking his second-lowest 54-hole score as a Buccaneer. Kleen posted a 5-under 67 in the final round thanks to bagging seven birdies, nine pars and two bogeys. Kleen played his first six holes and four-under before carding back-to-back bogeys on No. 7 and No. 8. However, Kleen finished with his fifth birdie on the front nine after posting a three on the par-4, 380-yard No. 9. From there, Kleen strung together back-to-back birdies for the second time of the day on No. 12 and No. 13 en route to finishing with the 67. Kleen finished the tournament with one eagle, 15 birdies and 33 pars.
Mats Ege (Kristiansand, Norway) collected his fifth top-10 finish of the year as he tied for sixth at 11-under-par 205. The 11-under is Ege’s third-lowest collegiate round as he posted a 13-under two weeks ago in the win at the General Hackler and had another 13-under in last year’s season opener at the Marquette Intercollegiate. Ege carded a 4-under 68 in Tuesday’s final round after finishing with rounds of 67 and 70 on Sunday and Monday. Ege enjoyed playing the par-4s this week as he registered the second-lowest scoring average (3.67) among the 81-player field. In addition, Ege collected a team-best 16 birdies and was one of four Bucs to post an eagle this week.
The third Buccaneer to finish in the top-10 was Archie Davies (Carlisle, England). Davies, last year’s champion of this tournament, finished tied for 10th at 9-under-par 207 (67-68-72) – his lowest 54-hole score this season.
Remi Chartier (Montreal, Canada) and Matty Dodd-Berry (Wirral, England) both put together three rounds below par as they each finished tied for 25th at 5-under-par 211. The 5-under tied a season-best for Dodd-Berry, while it marked Chartier’s lowest 54-hole score this season.
Overall, all five Bucs in this week’s line strung together scores below par for all three rounds.
Playing as an individual, freshman Carson Kammann (Knoxville, Tenn.) finished tied for 30th at 3-under-par 213 (70-74-69).
Furman’s Will Morlan earned medalist honors as he finished with a score of 18-under-par 198. Morlan shot an 8-under 64 in Tuesday’s finale to edge out Kentucky’s Alex Goff by two strokes.
ETSU makes its final tune up before the SoCon Championship this weekend when the Bucs play in the Augusta Haskins Invitational, which gets underway Saturday in Augusta, Ga.
For more information on Buccaneer men’s golf, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men’s golf page.