From Special Reports
STILLWATER, Okla. – The Alabama men’s golf team is back in the NCAA Championship match for the fourth time since 2012 after the Crimson Tide swept past Duke, 5-0, in the match-play semifinals Tuesday afternoon.
The Tide captured a 3-2 victory over Texas Tech in the quarterfinals earlier in the day and finished with a 2-0 record on the day to secure its spot in the championship match.
By advancing to this year’s championship round, Alabama has reached the final match four times in seven years, giving it the most finals appearances by any school since the NCAA adopted the current format in 2009.
In addition, both the Crimson Tide men’s and women’s teams reached the 2018 championship match making Alabama the first school to have both programs in the finals since the women adopted the format in 2015.
Alabama will face Oklahoma State for the title, a rematch of the 2014 NCAA final in which the Crimson Tide defeated the Cowboys, 4-1, to claim its second-consecutive national championship. Alabama also claimed the 2013 championship and finished national runner-up in 2012.
Crimson Tide freshmen, Wilson Furr and Davis Shore, finished the day with perfect 2-0 records, as did junior Davis Riley. Seniors Jonathan Hardee and Lee Hodges ended the day with 1-1 marks.
Alabama defeated No. 2-seed Duke, 5-0, in its semifinal Tuesday afternoon to advance to the championship match. It marked just the second time since the inception of the match-play format in 2009 that a contest resulted in a sweep (Texas swept Washington, 5-0, in 2012).
Freshman Davis Shore was dominant in his match against Duke’s Jake Shuman, winning 6&5 to give the Crimson Tide its first point of the day. Shore, who improved to 4-1 this season in match play, won five of the first seven holes and never looked back en route to the win.
Senior Lee Hodges claimed the Tide’s second point of the match with a 3&2 victory over Chandler Eaton. Moments later, junior Davis Riley sank a 15-foot birdie putt to win 3&2 over Adrien Pendaries, setting off a wild celebration on the 16th green as the Tide secured the win.
Senior Jonathan Hardee claimed a 3&2 win over Alex Smalley while freshman Wilson Furr secured a 2&1 win over Evan Katz for the sweep.
Freshman Davis Shore sank a 15-foot birdie putt to clinch a 3-2 victory over Texas Tech in the quarterfinals on Tuesday morning.
Shore’s winning putt came on No. 8, his 17th hole of the day after starting on the back nine, to secure a 2&1 victory.
The Tide also got points from freshman Wilson Furr, who beat Kyle Hogan 7&6, and junior Davis Riley, who claimed a 5&4 victory over Ivan Ramirez.
Senior Jonathan Hardee fell to Hurly Long, 5&4, while senior Lee Hodges dropped a 1up decision to Adam Blomme.
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.
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