FLORENCE, S.C. — Ryan Zabroske finished tied for fifth-place and closed the tournament with a 2-under par 214 at the 74th Southern Conference Men’s Golf Championship.
As a team, Georgia Southern recorded two individual top 10 finishes and took second place with an aggregated 865 (+1) after shooting the lowest final round at The Country Club of South Carolina, a par 72, 7,062-yard course.
Tied with UNC Greensboro through 18 holes, second place was left to be decided on the final hole. Spence Fulford parred the hole with UNCG’s Ryan Heisey double bogeying the par four hole.
“I’m proud of our overall effort and the fact that the team hung in there through the final holes,” said GSU coach Larry Mays. “For about nine holes there, we looked to be relegated to third place, but we stepped it up, made some birdies and finished strong.
“With all the adversity we faced as a team this week, I’m proud of them for their showing at the tournament. We were the third-ranked team entering the tournament and we finished second. Furman is a very solid squad to be beaten by and they are playing strong golf right now.”
Furman claimed the 74th title carding a 15-under 849 through three rounds. Paladin Austin Reeves took the individual title with a 207 (-9). Garland Ferrell of Furman, Ryan Heisey of UNC Greensboro and Jayson Judy of Elon tied for second with 4-under 212s. Georgia Southern finished two strokes in front of third-place UNCG at 865, while the Spartans tallied an 867. Elon finished fourth at 874 with Western Carolina rounding out the top five at 878 (+14).
Zabroske picked up All-Conference recognition with Florian Sander earning All-Freshman honors after his first season as an Eagle.
Zabroske led the team the entire season with a 74.43 stroke average at the end of regular season play, taking three top five finishes and an extra top 10 placement. The senior claimed two runner-up finishes at the Adams Cup of Newport Collegiate and tied for second at the Mizuno Savannah Intercollegiate. He highlighted his season with a career-best 207 tournament total at the Augusta State Invitational assisted by matching his career-low round of 67.
Sander had a promising freshman campaign with the second-lowest stroke average on the team at 73.67 entering the conference tournament. With three ‘Top 10’ finishes, Sander posted his best showing at the John Hayt Invitational where the Eagle tied for fifth with a 1-over 217. Sander shot his season-best 54 total at the Gary Koch Intercollegiate in the fall. With rounds of 70-71-70, Sander tallied a 5-under 211 for the tournament.
Zabroske’s five-under back nine highlighted the tournament for the Eagles. The senior parred the front half of the course minus an imperfection on hole three. But after taking the turn at 2-over, Zabroske fired four birdies over the first six holes sliding to 2-under with three holes remaining. Shooting 1-under on the final three holes, Zabroske capped the best round recorded by the Eagles in the tournament for a 3-under 69 and vaulted into a fifth-place tie individually at 2-under 214.
An up-and-down front nine capped by a birdie on nine left Fulford taking the turn at 1-under par 35. The senior evened his card opening the back with a bogey and erased a birdie on 11 with a bogey to follow. Fulford drew the round to a close with five pars and a bogey on 16 including the important par on 18 that sealed a second-place finish for Georgia Southern. A 217 tournament total placed the Eagle in a tie for ninth.
Sander, who finished tied for 15th at 219, evened his playing card on the front nine after a birdie to open the round with a bogey on hole four. After a level turn on the front nine, Sander proceeded to launch two birdies, holes 11 and 14, to drop to 2-under entering the final three holes. Sander moved to even giving way to the final three holes with a par, bogey, bogey.
Georgia Southern will now await an NCAA Regional at-large bid which will be announced on May 10.
From staff and wire reports
BA-FA will conclude today
The Bulloch Academy-Frederica Academy varsity baseball game Tuesday was called due to lightning and the threat of inclement weather and will resume today at 5 p.m.
The Gators were ahead 5-0 in the bottom of the second inning.
Three Gator pairs punch ticket to semis
MACON — Three Bulloch Academy doubles pairs won in first- and second-round play Monday at the GISA Class AA state playoffs to advance to the semifinals.
For the Lady Gators, Morgan Anderson and McKenzie Webb won 6-2, 6-2 in the first round and 6-1, 6-3 in the second to reach the semifinal round. They will face Frederica Monday in Macon. Kate Anna Akins and Mary Catherine Spigener were 6-1, 6-0 and 6-2, 6-1 to advance to face Heritage.
Boys pair Paul Son and Brandon Walker won 6-0, 6-0 and 6-1, 6-0. They will also face Heritage in the semifinals.
Singles player Erin Sullivan advancet to the second round before falling 4-6, 3-6.
The championships will all be decided Monday, and the team championships will take place Wednesday in Augusta,
Flynn named SoCon PotW
SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Georgia Southern’s Justin Flynn has been named the Southern Conference Men’s Tennis Player of the Week for all matches April 12-18 the league office announced Tuesday.
Flynn posted a perfect 4-0 record in all competition last week as the Eagles defeated Chattanooga (4-3) and Samford (4-3). The Player of the Week is awarded by the conference office.
Competing in his final two collegiate matches, Flynn came away with a pair of wins in singles play. He posted a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Chattanooga’s Jackson Tresnan at No. 4 singles. Flynn then moved to No. 5 singles where he topped Samford’s Scott Foster in three sets (6-2, 2-6, 6-4) to give him a five-match win streak to close the season.
JV Gators finish on top
SANDERSVILLE — For the second year in a row, the Bulloch Academy junior varsity girls’ track team won the Brentwood Relays, the meet which is considered the ‘unofficial’ Georgia Independent School Association (GISA) middle-school state championship.
The Lady Gators scored 125.5 points to overwhelm the nine-team, all-classification field. Trinity Christian School of Dublin was second with 95.5 points and Pinewood Christian Academy was third with 46 points.
Seventh grader Pate Lomax was Bulloch’s star on the day, winning three events in record-setting fashion. She won the 1600-meter run with an astounding time of 5:50, the 800m run with an equally-impressive 2:39 and leapt 4-6 in the high jump. She also ran legs on the winning 4x400m relay team and on the second-place 4x100m relay team. Lomax won the meet’s high-point trophy by notching 33.75 points.
“Pate was awesome,” said head coach Barbara Conner. “Those are fantastic, varsity-quality times. She had an outstanding day.”
Eighth grader Hendley Kimbrell was the only other individual first-place winner, taking the 100m hurdles with a time of 17.19. The 4x400m relay team of Lomax, Kimbrell, Page Spence and Ashley Burke ran a 4:35.
Second-place points were earned by Burke in the 1600m run (6:00) and the 800m run (2:43), Kimbrell in the 200m dash (29.53) and the 4x100m relay team of Lomax, Kimbrell, Spence and Claire Branch.
Other points were pulled in by Kimbrell (long jump, fourth), Spence (400m dash, third; discus, fourth), Branch (200m dash, fourth; 100m dash, fifth), Ashlee Lanier (shot, fourth; discus, eighth), Danielle Atkinson (400m dash, fourth), Kerigan Mallard (100m dash, eighth) and the second 4x400m relay team (Atkinson, Mallard, Abigail Morgan and Heather Jacobs, fourth).
“It was a fantastic conclusion to a great season,” said Conner.
Pinewood won the boys’ meet with 105 points and John Milledge Academy was second with 72. The Gators finished third with 60.5.
The Bulloch guys captured two events, placed third in two more, had three fourths, two fifths, one sixth, one seventh and one eighth.
Eighth grader Connor Fordham won the discus (105 _) while classmate Daniel Hendrix took the 400m dash (60.18). Fordham was third in the shot while Hendrix tied for sixth in the high jump and finished seventh in the 200m dash.
Other points were pulled in by Chris Williams (1600m run, third; 800m run, fifth), Davis Duggan (1600m run, fourth; 800m run, eighth), Dylan Stuckey (100m hurdles, fifth), the 4x100m relay team of Hendrix, Williams, Duggan and Andrew Donaldson (fourth) and the 4x400m relay team of Hendrix, Williams, Duggan and Atys Cope (fourth).
SC, SEB to face one last time
SYLVANIA — The Screven County Lady Gamecocks will host Southeast Bulloch for a third regular season matchup as both teams colse out the season today.
Screven fell 3-0 to Savannah Christian Tuesday. Keeper Jessica Markovcic recorded seven saves.
If you have a score to report, please call the Statesboro Herald sports desk at (912) 489-9408.