DELAND, Fla. – Freshman Edward Figueroa’s (Naples, Fla./St. John Neumann HS) three-under 69 was the second-lowest round of the day, but it wasn’t enough to lead the FGCU men’s golf team to its fourth straight Stetson Invitational title, as the Eagles finished second behind No. 42 UCF at Victoria Hills Golf Club.
The Green and Blue entered Tuesday’s final round one stroke behind first place USC Upstate, but passed the Spartans in the standings with a score of 293 compared to a 301. Starting the day in fourth place, UCF made up six strokes on the Eagles with a final round four-under 284 to take home the team title. The Knights’ 297-289-284(-4)/870 was three strokes better than FGCU (291-289-293/873).
The second place finish is the second of the fall for the Eagles, who won the Cobra-PUMA Invitational earlier in the year. FGCU led the nine-team field in par 3 scoring (+10) and second in par 4 scoring, birdies (38) and pars (177).
Figueroa’s three-under 69 is a fitting end to a sensational fall for the Naples, Fla. native, as he tied for fourth overall in the field of 46. Figueroa’s 75-71(-1)-69(-3)/215(-1) scorecard featured eight birdies, a tournament-low par 3 scoring of four-under and a team-best three-under on the par 5s. Finishing the fall with a pair of top 10s, Figueroa turned in a counting score in all 15 rounds, highlighted by seven under-par rounds.
Junior Matt Cote’s (Palm Harbor, Fla./Palm Harbor University HS) second top 10 in three tournaments saw the 2011 A-Sun Freshman of the Year finish in sole possession of seventh place. Cote’s tournament was highlighted by his first career bogey-free round, a two-under 70 to close out Monday. On Tuesday, he shot a 75 to move down four spots into seventh. Cote was the tournament leader in par 4 scoring (-1) and the team leader with 40 pars.
Equaling UCF’s tournament-high three players in the top 10, junior Mathias Boesmans (Belgium/Western Texas College) finished in a four-way tie for eighth overall. Boesmans was FGCU’s low-man in Monday’s first round with a two-under 70 and followed with back-to-back 75s. He finished second in the field with a team-high 11 birdies.
Freshman Jake Sherwin (Fort Myers, Fla./Evangelical Christian HS) moved up one spot on the final day with his two-over 74. Sherwin tied for 16th overall with a 76-73-74/223 scorecard, highlighted by 36 pars. Sophomore Jack Hernandez (Fort Myers, Fla./Bishop Verot HS) made it all five Eagles in the top 20, tying for 19th place. Hernandez turned in a 73-76-75/224 scorecard.
FGCU PARTICIPANTS (Golfstat Cup Ranking)
T-4. Edward Figueroa (116) -75-71(-1)-69(-3)/215(-1)
7. Matt Cote – 73-70(-2)-75/218
T-8. Mathias Boesmans – 70(-2)-75-75/220
T-17. Jake Sherwin – 76-73-74/223
T-19. Jack Hernandez – 73-76-75/224
STETSON/CFSC INVITATIONAL FINAL STANDINGS (Golfstat Ranking)
1. UCF (42) – 297-289-284(-4)/870
2. FGCU (149) – 291-289-293/873
3. Bethune-Cookman (148) – 294-289-295/878
4. USC Upstate (218) – 288(E)-291-301/880
5. FAU (203) – 298-304-293/895
6. Lipscomb (146) – 301-307-301/909
7. Savannah State – 302-315-311/928
8. Stetson (206) – 316-310-306/932
9. Florida A&M – 317-319-325/961