*Courtesy Auburn Media Relations*
HUTCHINSON, Kan. - Auburn golf's season came to a disappointing end on Monday as the team finished 23rd at the 2014 NCAA Men's Golf Championships following a final round plus-20 at Prairie Dunes Country Club. Auburn, which was tied for third after the opening round and tied for 11th after the second round, shot 274-292-300--866.
"The first 27 holes we played great, we were at 9-under par, and the last 27 - it hurts," Auburn head coach Nick Clinard said. "It stings a little bit. It's probably the worst 27 holes in my 13-year coaching career."
Matt Gilchrest was Auburn's low-scorer, shooting 67-73-74--214 (+4) to tie for 57 in his first NCAA Championship appearance. Gilchrest finished his inaugural season at Auburn with a 71.92 scoring average, ninth-best in school history and second-best by an Auburn freshman.
Niclas Carlsson shot 68-73-76--217 (+7) to finish in a tie for 83rd in his third NCAA Championship appearance. He finished his senior season with a 71.18 scoring average, which is the fourth-best in Auburn history for a single season.
Will Long also tied for 83rd at plus-7, shooting 68-73-76--217. Jake Mondy (71-76-74--221) and Daniel Stringfellow (71-73-77--221) tied for 113th at plus-11.
"They have a lot to learn. They have a lot of growing up to do maturity-wise as people and as golfers," Clinard said of his team that counted two freshmen (Gilchrest and Long) and a sophomore (Mondy) among its five players. "This is a good experience for them. They get to realize what they have to work on and what they have to do to improve."
The top eight teams, which advance to match play to determine the 2014 champion, were No. 3 Stanford (-13), No. 1 Alabama (-4), No. 16 LSU (-4), No. 2 Oklahoma State (E), No. 4 Georgia Tech (+1), No. 21 UCLA (+4), No. 28 SMU (+5) and No. 9 Illinois (+5).
Georgia Tech's Ollie Schniederjans and Stanford's Cameron Wilson tied for the individual lead at minus-6, with Wilson winning in a playoff that lasted three holes.