The BYU men’s golf team completed another successful season at the NCAA Regional golf tournament in Auburn, Alabama, on Saturday by placing seventh out of the 14 teams who participated.
The Cougars finished the tournament at 22 over par, two shots behind fifth-place Texas at 20 over par. Had the Cougars placed in the top five, they would have qualified for the NCAA National Championship.
“We felt strongly that we can make it to the championships and make some noise, but all in all, we came here and gave it a good effort,” said BYU golf coach Bruce Brockbank. “Our goal was to get to the championships, but we’ll fight through it and see how we can get better. We made it difficult for us to get the scores we needed, but it came down to the wire. We had a great year, and I was pleased. We learned some great lessons with these great group of guys, and we came together.”
BYU was led by senior Justin Keiley, who finished the tournament at two over par and tied for 15th place individually.
“Keiley was consistent the whole tournament, and we really have to hand it to him for carrying us,” Brockbank said.
After the first day of the three-day tournament, BYU fought through windy conditions to shoot 11 over par and finish the round in eighth place overall, one shot out of a tie for fifth place. Justin Keiley and Cole Ogden shot one over and two over respectively to help put the Cougars in prime position heading into day two.
“The (first) day was really windy, so it was really challenging and tough to shoot a good score,” Brockbank said. “It put us right in the middle of the pack. We let a few shots at the end of the round get away from us, but I was pleased with the way the guys hung in there and battled.”
The Cougars had a strong second day and found themselves in the top five at the end of the round. Junior Jordan Rodgers shot a one under par 71, Keiley posted a 72, and senior Jordan Hammer fired a 74 to help the Cougars finish in a tie for fifth with Texas after two days of competition.
Brockbank was pleased with the way the team finished and with the position it held heading into the final round.
“It’s always nice to have your four and five guys put up respectable numbers for the team,” Brockbank said. “Keiley is playing solid, like always, and we moved up a couple spots. We’re in great company, and we just have to go out and have a great day. We have a great chance to advance, and it’s nice to be in contention.”
BYU shot its best round of the tournament when it mattered most on day three. Sophomore Joe Parkinson cruised to a one under par 71; Keiley and Ogden both finished with a 73 that helped the team finish the round at five over par, with 22 over par for the tournament.
The tournament was won by Alabama, who finished 11 under par as a team, 22 shots clear of second place Kennesaw State. Auburn, Virginia Tech and Texas rounded out the top five and will compete in the NCAA Championships on May 23–28.
Parkinson improved his positioning by 14 spots in the final round to finish in a tie for 28th; Rodgers finished in a tie for 39th, one stroke ahead of Hammer, who tied for 44th, and Ogden came in tied for 52nd overall.
“We’re sure going to miss our seniors, Justin and Jordan,” Brockbank said. “Both those guys have done a great job for our team, and we’ll learn from them and their leadership. They have been a phenomenal example for our team.”