April 20, 2010
Florence, S.C. -- Junior Austin Reeves carded a final round 70 to capture Southern Conference Individual Medalist honors and lead Furman (280-279-290=849) to a two-over par 290 and its first SoCon title since 2004 on Tuesday at the par-72 Country Club of South Carolina.
With the victory, Furman earned the league's automatic bid to one of six NCAA Regionals to be held May 20-22. The top five teams in each of the six 13-team regionals will advance to the NCAA Championship which will be held June 1-6, at The Honors Course in Chattanooga, Tenn.
"I couldn't be prouder of these guys," said Furman head coach Todd Satterfield, who was named Southern Conference Coach-of-the-Year for the fourth time in his career. "They have worked so hard, especially my seniors. It is great to see that hard work pay off with a championship and a trip the NCAA Regionals."
Reeves (71-66-70=207), a native of Greenville and product of Eastside High School, notched five birdies over the first 11 holes on Tuesday to open up as much as a seven-stroke lead before finishing at nine-under 207 for the tournament and holding off teammate Garland Ferrell (69-68-75=212), UNCG's Ryan Heisey (72-67-73=212) and Elon's Jayson Judy (72-73-67=212) by five strokes. His three-round total is the best by a SoCon champion since the College of Charleston's Daniel Brunson won individual medalist honors with an 11-under 205 at the Furman University Golf Course in 2002. The tournament title is the second for Reeves who downed teammate Daniel Bowden in a four-hole playoff to claim honors at the 2009 Furman Intercollegiate.
Furman, which held an 11-stroke lead over second place UNC Greensboro entering the final round, cruised to a 16-shot win over second place Georgia Southern (290-286-289=865). UNC Greensboro (290-280-297=867), Elon (295-289-290=874) and Western Carolina (295-292-291=878) rounded out the top five finishers in the 11-team field.
Ferrell, tied for the lead with Reeves entering Tuesday morning, shot a three-over 75 to finish at four-under par. Anthony Aloi (73-72-70=215) made the biggest move for the Paladins in round three registering birdies on the first three holes of the back nine en route to a two-under 70. The Plainsboro, N.J., native totaled five birdies on the day to finish at one-under for the tournament and claim seventh place.
Reeves, Bowden and Ferrell were each named to the All-Southern Conference team following the conclusion of the SoCon Championship.
The win gave Furman its 13th Southern Conference title and first since 2004. The Paladins will be making their fourth NCAA Regional appearance and sixth overall trip to the NCAA postseason.
The Paladins will find out their NCAA Regional destination in a conference call with NCAA officials on May 10.
Full results and statistics from the Southern Conference Championship are available at www.golfstatresults.com.
1 Furman 280 279 290 849
1 Austin Reeves 71 66 70 207
T2 Garland Ferrell 69 68 75 212
7 Anthony Aloi 73 72 70 215
8 Daniel Bowden 67 73 76 216
T40 Jack Ulrich 77 77 75 229