It was a frustrating day for No. 10-ranked Tommie Men's Golf Tuesday to conclude the 54-hole NCAA Preview event near Lexington, Ky. Coach Scott Proshek's team shot 306 on the last round and finished 15th of 18 teams, just five shots out of 11th place. Fourteen nationally-ranked Division III teams were in the field.
Emory (Ga.) posted a 24-shot victory atop the leaderboard with rounds of 300, 277, 289.
St. Thomas (317-299-306/922) finished four shots behind 11th-place St. John's.
Tommie junior Emmet Herb started the day in the top 10 among 90 players in the field after posted an eagle and five birdies through 36 holes. But Herb couldn't coax a birdie on his final round score of 77 and he slipped to a tie for 14th place.
Senior Matt Mellin rebounded from a tough Monday round and shot 74, led by five birdies. Sophomore Miles McCarthy sank five consecutive birdles later in his Tuesday round and shot 78. Peder Larson carded a 77, and freshman Sawyer Bailey shot 82.
The Tommies will play next weekend in the three-day Twin Cities Classic.
Junior Emmet Herb had rounds of 75 and 70 to lead No. 10-ranked St. Thomas into a share of 12th-place after day one of the 18-team NCAA Preview men's golf tourney near Lexington, Ky.
The final 18 holes will be played Tuesday, with 14 nationally-ranked Division III teams are competing.
St. Thomas (317-299/616) and St. John's (319-297/616) are eight shots out of eighth place and four shots out of the top 10. Leader Emory (Ga.) is ahead of both Wittenberg and Carnegie-Mellon by 16 strokes after rounds of 300-277/577.
Herb is tied for sixth place in a field of 90 players. His eagle on a par-four hole Monday afternoon helped him post a two-under score.
Freshman Sawyer Bailey had rounds of 79-74/153 and is tied for 33rd. Sophomore Peder Larson is tied for 63rd after shooting 84 and 75. Soph Miles McCarthy had rounds of 80-80/160 and is tied for 71st.
Tommie Men's Golf is in Lexington, Ky., preparing for the Monday-Tuesday NCAA Preview tournament, hosted by Transylvania University. Sixteen of the top-20 ranked Division III teams are expected to compete with 36 holes Monday and 18 on Tuesday.
Rain fell for Sunday's practice rounds and is also in Monday's forecast, altthough sunny skies are predicted for Tuesday's final round.
The No. 10-ranked Tommies have won their last four fall tournaments dating back to October 2017.
On Sept. 8-9, St. Thomas had five of the top 11 Division III finishers and surged on the final 18 holes to claim the team title by two strokes in the 54-hole St. Thomas Invitational. Just five shots separated the Tommies, runner-up Gustavus and third-place Augsburg. The teams played 18 holes on Saturday and 36 on Sunday.
Emmet Herb was the second Division III finisher and tied for 10th in the field of 82, including more than a dozen Division I players. Herb shot 71-75-71/217. Peder Larson tied for 20th after rounds of 75-73-72/220. Matt Mellin's final round 71 was big and he closed in a tie for 27th with UST's Eric Chambers at 222. Miles McCarthy closed with a four-over 76 to help UST's No. 1 team hold on to win as he was the Toms' No. 4 scorer.
UST Golf Notes
- No. 10-ranked St. Thomas has one returner from its 2017-18 team that tied for 11th place nationally -- current junior Emmet Herb, the MIAC Player of the Year. Herb had five rounds of 70 or lower last school year.
- The Tommie lineup this week will consist of Herb, who grew up near Madison, Wis., and four Minnesotans: senior Matt Mellin; sophomores Miles McCarthy and Peder Larson; and freshman Sawyer Bailey.
- Under ninth-year coach Scott Proshek, St. Thomas has advanced to the NCAA Championships in six of the last seven seasons. His Tommies have won both tournaments they have entered this fall: a four-stroke victory in the 36-hole Augsburg Invite, and a two-stroke win in the 54-hole St. Thomas Invite.
- The 2017-18 Tommies won the elite 18-team Golfweek Preview Tournament in October 2017 for the second time in three years. That helped the Tommies rank No. 1 in Division III in the GolfStat computer rankings and No. 3 in the coaches' poll for most of the winter and spring. St. Thomas also won its conference championship and tied for 11th out of 42 teams at the May 2018 national tournament.
- In 2015-16, the Tommies tied for fifth place at nationals -- a program best. That squad won the NCAA Preview tourney the previous fall as it shot two-under-par 282 -- a school-record total -- on the last day. That let them vault from fifth to first place, erasing a 16-stroke deficit to second-round leader Texas-Tyler. UST outscored 13 teams ranked in Division III's top 21, including No. 1-ranked Methodist (N.C.) and No. 2 Oglethorpe (Ga.).
- The 2014-15 team advanced to the NCAA Championships and finished 12th out of 41 teams.
- In 2012-2013, the Tommies finished second at the conference meet and were awarded an at-large berth into the NCAA Championships. The team missed the cut after finishing 19th out of the 41 participating teams.