PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. - The No. 26 Aggie men's golf team opened the 2013 spring season with a strong showing at the SeaBest Invitational, finishing in second place at the tournament which concluded Tuesday.
The Aggies (289-296-298=883) battled head-to-head with eventual winner Tennessee during Tuesday's final round to end the event just four shots back of the Volunteers with a three-round team total of 19-over par.
"Second is a good place to start, but we're disappointed because we really feel like we should have won the golf tournament," Texas A&M head coach J.T. Higgins said. "We were down six strokes to start today's round and had caught them (Tennessee) by the turn and actually took the lead for a while. The bottom line, however, is we just played No. 18 horribly with two bogies, a double and a triple on that one hole and we lost by four shots."
Coastal Carolina came in third with a three-day score of 898 (+34), followed by East Carolina (+36), Winthrop (+37), East Tennessee State (+38), Jacksonville State (+51), Old Dominion (+56), Georgia State (+58), Jacksonville (+61), Francis Marion (+62), Wofford (+67), USC Upstate (+69), Florida Gulf Coast (+69) and Charleston Southern (+98).
"If you want to be a great team and you want to win golf tournaments you've got to finish them off and we didn't do that today," Higgins added. "I hope that we learn from it and it doesn't happen again but a second place finish is a good way to start the spring and we're going to build on it."
Sophomore Greg Yates (72-75-70=217) led the way for the Aggies by placing second individually. Yates carded a round of two-under par Tuesday, hitting three birdies and eagling the seventh hole to bring him to just one-over par for the entire tournament.
Senior Drew Evans (70-74-76=220) followed closely behind Yates in fifth place overall, shooting four-over par for the tournament.
Junior Johannes Veerman (74-74-75=223) and senior Cameron Peck (73-73-78=224) were neck-and-neck as they finished with scores of seven and eight-over par, respectively. Veerman tied for ninth while Peck finished 13th. Freshman Ben Crancer (75-82-77=234) rounded out the A&M team with a final score of 18 over par.
"We finished with three guys in the top 10 and Greg was just fantastic today at two-under," Higgins said. "He finished really strong and gave us a chance today. I like seeing that out of him and that's what we think he's capable of all the time so hopefully we see more of that this spring."
Next on the schedule for the Aggies is the John A. Burns Intercollegiate which will take place Feb. 20-22 in Kahuku, Hawaii.