Ducks can’t overcome early deficit at Southern Highlands Collegiate, finish 10th

In a quick turnaround from last week’s Southwestern Jones Invitational, the Oregon men’s golf team fell behind early at the Southern Highlands Tournament in Las Vegas and finished 10th on Wednesday.

The Ducks fell behind much of the field early into the tournament and shot a combined 16-over 304 in Monday’s first round. They improved by seven strokes in the second round and 17 strokes in the third, but it was too little too late.

Freshman Edwin Yi, one week after playing his best collegiate tournament to date, came back to earth with a combined +22 over three rounds. Seniors Zach Foushee and Brandon McIver finished +7 and +11 respectively. Even usually-reliable sophomore Aaron Wise shot nine-over.

The lone bright spot for the Ducks was redshirt junior Sulman Raza. Shaking off a five-over first round, Raza shot three and four under in the final two rounds, good enough to tie for third on the individual leaderboard.

Thanks in large part to Raza, the Ducks shot one-under as a team in the third round. Oregon was the only team to shoot under par on Wednesday.

USC (+5) finished first, winning its second consecutive tournament, following last week’s victory at the Southwestern Jones Invitational. Florida’s Sam Horsfield won the tournament as an individual with a combined seven-under scorecard.

The tournament, which included No. 1 Illinois, No. 4 USC, No. 6 Arizona State, No. 8 Alabama and No. 11 Texas, featured the deepest field the Ducks have faced this season to date. With much of this field likely contending for an NCAA Championship in May, this tournament served as a reminder that the Ducks have a lot to work on between now and then.

Next up, Oregon will travel to nearby Canby, Oregon to compete in the Oregon State Invite, which goes from March 21-22.

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Will Denner

Will Denner

Will Denner is a senior journalism major at the University of Oregon. He covers football and men's golf for the Emerald. Email Will at [email protected] with tips, questions and comments.