HUTCHINSON, Kan. — Oklahoma entered the final day of stroke-play qualifying at the NCAA men’s golf championships needing to stay put or, at least, lose no more than two spots in the team standings.
That would assure no worse than an eighth-place finish and a spot in the match play portion, beginning today, that will eventually crown a national champion. Instead, the Sooners tumbled 10 spots, placed 16th and said goodbye to their season two days short of their ultimate goal.
“We had it right where we wanted it with about six holes to go, and bad things happened,” OU coach Ryan Hybl said. “We had high hopes for today and we wanted one of those eight slots.”
The Sooners fired off a final-round 294 to finish with a three-round total of 14-over-par 854. Monday, OU got a 72 from Max McGreevy, 74s from Charlie Saxon and Michael Gellerman, a 75 from Beau Titsworth and an 87 from Michael Schoolcraft. Saxon, with a 29th-place finish at even-par 210 was the top-finishing Sooner individual.
Beyond OU’s fortunes, Stanford’s Cameron Wilson won the national title when he birdied the third hole of a playoff against Georgia Tech’s Ollie Schniederjans, helping Stanford to the top score in team qualifying.
“I think he was maybe the most overlooked player here,” Cardinal coach Conrad Ray said. “He’s had a great year. He’s a ball-striker, and if you want to find a ball-striker’s paradise, it’s Prairie Dunes.”
Wilson bogeyed the final hole of his round, leading to the playoff with Schniederjans. But he managed to focus on the bigger picture on the big day.
“The sun was setting, the fescue looked green everywhere, there’s (American) flags everywhere and Ollie is a friend,” Wilson said. “I was just thinking it was all really cool.”