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Kentucky Kernel

The Student News Site of University of Kentucky

Kentucky Kernel

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Kentucky men’s golf opens spring season with sixth place finish at Briar’s Creek

On Monday, Feb. 4, Kentucky men’s golf team commenced play at the Battle at Briar’s Creek.

Following consecutive fourth-place finishes in their previous two matches, the Wildcats aimed to showcase their prowess in the spring debut under the team’s new head coach Gator Todd.

The starting lineup for Kentucky featured Alex Goff, Campbell Kremer, Jansen Preston, Andrew Clark, Oakley Gee and Cooper Parks.

Before the scheduled tee time to start the tournament, there was a substantial amount of rain that shortened gameplay from 54 to 36 holes.

Kentucky surged with a commanding performance in the final 18 holes, notching a four-under-par team total during round two. Kremer, Goff and Preston all excelled, while the sophomore Clark contributed with a solid even-par round of 72.

UK emerged as one of only two teams to shoot an under-par total in round two, propelling the Wildcats from a tie at 11th place to a solo sixth place in the standings.

“I’m so proud of our guys for battling back into this golf tournament,” Todd told UK Athletics. “We played the last 27 holes as well as anybody in the field. We were rusty with our decision-making this week and par five play ultimately cost us from contending. I like this team and the direction we’re headed.”

Individually, it was an incredibly successful day for the guys as Kremer led the team with an impressive nine birdies, tying for the third most among all players in the field. His strong second-round score of 70 was the highest among all Wildcats at the event. Additionally, his two rounds of par or better contributed to a 26 for his collegiate career.

Goff, embarking on his fifth year with the Wildcats, reinforced his value by concluding the event at two-under-par, extending his streak of finishing under par in four consecutive tournaments.

His performance marked a fifth consecutive top-10 finish, underscoring his consistent excellence on the course.

Preston, a transfer from Vanderbilt, made his debut in a spring event as a Wildcat, contributing to UK’s fourth under-par round of the tournament. Preston’s standout performance came in the second round with a score of 71, highlighted by a remarkable start of three consecutive birdies on his first three holes, showcasing his immediate impact on the team.

Clark and Gee started with challenging opening rounds, but ultimately recovered with final 18s, shooting 72 and 73.

Although Clemson ultimately clinched the win as the only team under par at 575 (-1), UK secured the sixth position to open the spring season.

The Wildcats will be competing again on Saturday, Feb 17, in the Gators Invitational at the Mark Bostick Golf Course in Gainesville, Florida.

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