KIAWAH ISLAND, SC – The Lander men's golf team and senior Jon Parker got the 2019-20 season off to a great start as both claimed titles at the season-opening Kiawah Invitational on Tuesday. Parker fired rounds of 66 and 68 to take the individual title while the Lander team shot 19-under-par to hold off host USC Aiken. Four PBC teams finished in the top 10 in the 18-team event.
Parker won the individual title as the Greenwood native fired a four-under-par 68 in the final round to claim his first collegiate individual title. Parker came into the day in first place and held that position till the end. Parker finished with a tournament scorecard of 66-68—134.
Freshman Chris Fortenberry was next for the Bearcats as he finished in second place. The Myrtle Beach native finished the day with a five-under-par 67. Fortenberry finished with a tournament scorecard of 68-67—135.
Freshman Valentin Peugnet finished in a tie for 5th place. Peugnet shot a three-under-par 69 and finished with a final tournament scorecard of 69-69—138.
Cameron Bell finished in a tie for 61st place. The Surrey, England, native shot a one-under-par 71 in the final round and finished with a scorecard of 80-71—151.
Conor Cull rounded out the Bearcat lineup in a tie for 76th place. The London, England, native shot a 76 on Tuesday and finished with a scorecard of 79-76—155.
The tournament title is the first for the Bearcats since they won the 2017 Bearcat Classic, and it is the first team title away from home since the 2015 Pfeiffer Invitational.
It is the first collegiate individual title for Jon Parker and the first individual title for the Bearcats since Michel Pospisil won the 2017 Bearcat Classic.
The tournament win is also the first for head coach Mark Riddle.
USC Aiken finished in second place, just three shots behind the Bearcats. The Pacers were led by rookie Leonardo Bono's third-place effort. He shot eight-under par, 136.
Fellow newcomer Leo Johansson notched a ninth-place finish. He carded a four-under par, 140, for the event. Sophomore Nicholas Poole tied for 10th. He shot three-under par, 141. Dan Sheehan and George Eubank posted scores of four-over par and six-over par, respectively.
Clayton State finished in a tie for fifth at three-under 573 with Southern Wesleyan and Valdosta State. Junior Raul Carbonell (Panama City, Panama) made a 24 spot jump as he tied for the third lowest round on the day, finishing with a 74-68-142 to lead the Lakers in a tie for No. 15.
Senior Joseph Kim (Martinez, Ga.) was next highest, tying for 25th (71-73-144), while sophomores Javier Gonzalez (San Jose Del Cabo, Mexico) and Augusto Oliva (Buenos Aires, Argentina) stayed tied, this time for 28th, as they shot identical 70-75-145 rounds. Sophomore Nico Cabello (Santiago, Chile) rounded things out with a strong 74-72-146 to tie for 33rd.
Columbus State improved by 15 strokes from round one to finish the event in 10th place with a three-over 579 team score.
Jordan Doull also rocketed up the leaderboard on Tuesday as the junior grabbed a top-10 finish. The All-American carded a four-under 68 to finish in a tie for 10th. The 68 was tied for the second-best round over Tuesday. For the tournament, he shot a three-under 141.
Sophomore Ronan Kleu improved his score as well over round two. Kleu shot an even-par 72 to wrap up the event with a two-over 146. He finished in 33rd place.
Also finishing in 33rd was freshman James Ashfield. Ashfield was consistent for the Cougars in his first tournament posting a 73 in back-to-back rounds. He finished the tournament at two-over 146.
Cole Cruickshank bounced back in a huge way for Columbus State. After shooting an eight-over 80 in round one, the senior turned in a three-under 69 on Tuesday to jump nearly 30 spots on the leaderboard. For the event, he shot a five-over 149.
Rounding out play for the Cougars on Tuesday was freshman Luke Barnes. Barnes nearly tallied his first career under-par round as he posted a one-over 73 over his 18 holes. He finished right behind Cruickshank with a six-over 150.
With sophomore Isaac Samples posting the first sub-par round of the year for Georgia College, the Bobcats took 13th place.
Samples and junior Alex Wells shared the team lead for the two-round tourney at four-over par. Samples carded a 77 yesterday and shaved six strokes off in today's action. Wells posted a consistent pair of 74s.
Freshman Mike Leanos responded well to his first collegiate action, finishing 56th in the 90-golfer field at plus-six after rounds of 72 and 78. Freshman Michael Zachary owned rounds of 78 and 73 for seven-over in 61st. Junior Bailey Scifleet produced a strong 72 yesterday, but stumbled a bit Tuesday for 10-over. The Bobcats finished 15-over with rounds of 295 and 296.