Mercer scored what was likely the biggest victory in the history of the school’s golf program, winning the annual Brickyard Collegiate in the Bears’ home town of Macon over a field that included Georgia Tech and Georgia.
The Bears shot 27-under 837, highlighted by a school record 16-under 272 in the second round. Mercer trailed Georgia Tech by two after shooting 284 in the first round, but moved one ahead of the Yellow Jackets after 36 holes.
Mercer shot 281 the final day to finish two ahead of Georgia Tech, which closed with a 282 total to place 2nd at 839. Georgia closed with scores of 281 the last two rounds to finish 4th at 853.
Making just his second college start, Mercer freshman Emmanuel Kountakis of Augusta shared medalist honors with teammate Hans Reimers and Georgia Tech’s Seth Reeves of Duluth at 9-under 207. Kountakis shot 68-69-70, with Reimers posting scores of 65-69 the last two days. Reeves shot 70-68-69.
All five Mercer starters shot par or better in the tournament, with Sean Smothers tying for 9th at 211, Eatonton’s Trey Rule T19 at 214 and James Beale T21 at 216.
Georgia Tech’s Ollie Schniederjans (Powder Springs) finished one shot behind the co-medalists with scores of 67-69-72—208. Anders Albertson (Woodstock) shot 68 in the second round for the Jackets and tied for 16th at 213.
Keith Mitchell was low for Georgia, tying for 6th at 210 after a tournament best 65 in the opening round. Nicholas Reach was next for the Bulldogs, tying for 9th at 211 with a final round 68. Lee McCoy (Clarkesville) tied for 12th at 212, with Joey Garber T19 at 214.
Augusta State was 8th in the tournament at 869, with Georgia State 9th at 870. State’s Davin White (Griffin) tied for 12th at 212, with teammate Jonathan Grey T22 at 221 along with Augusta’s Maverick Antcliff.
Jackets, Bulldogs score early wins
Both Georgia Tech and Georgia got off to a strong starts in their Fall schedules, with the Yellow Jackets opening the 2013-14 season with back-to-back wins and the Bulldogs scoring a win after finishing 2nd behind Tech in the opening tournament for both teams.
Georgia Tech began its Fall schedule by winning the annual Carpet Capital Collegiate at The Farm outside Dalton, posting a 14-under 850 total to finish six shots in front of the Bulldogs.
Tech led by 10 shots after shooting 280 in the opening round, but Georgia closed within four of the Jackets with a 6-under 282 the second day. Tech came back with a 7-under 281 in the final round, while the Bulldogs shot 283.
Schniederjans shared medalist honors with North Carolina’s Patrick Barrett at 9-under 207. Schniederjans shot 67-67-73, letting an individual title slip away when he played his final two holes in 3-over.
Tech’s Richy Werenski shot a final round 67 to tie for 5th at 214, with Reeves also closing with a 67 to place 11th at 215. Albertson shot 70-71 the first two rounds and tied for 12th at 216.
Georgia was led by Garber, who placed 4th at 212. Michael Cromie tied for 5th at 212 highlighted by a second round 68. Freshman Greyson Sigg of Augusta, making his college debut, tied for 20th at 218 along with McCoy. Valdosta’s Sam Straka, playing as an individual, tied for 12th at 216.
Georgia Tech followed its season-opening win with a runaway victory in the Tar Heel Intercollegiate at Chapel Hill, winning by 20 shots with a 22-under 842 total. Reeves earned medalist honors by four shots at 8-under 208 with scores of 69-69-70.
Werenski was 2nd at 212, with Schniederjans 3rd at 213 and Albertson tying for 4th at 214. Bo Andrews contributed with a final round 68. Tech’s scores of 283-281-278 were low for each round.
The Bulldogs won the Dick’s Sporting Goods Challenge in Nashville, shooting 20-under 832 to finish five in front of Texas A&M. Georgia trailed A&M heading to the final round, but shot a second 274 to pull out the victory.
Garber again was low for the Bulldogs with scores of 67-70-67, taking 2nd at 9-under 204. McCoy closed with a 67 to take 5th at 210, with Cromie 8th at 211. Mookie DeMoss (Duluth) shot 68 in the first round and 71 the final day to place 15th at 215, with Reach contributing scores of 71-69 the first two rounds.
The tournament closed with the four SEC teams in the tournament taking on the four ACC teams in match play. Georgia drew Clemson and defeated the Tigers 5-0.
Owls score victory in South Carolina
Kennesaw State also scored an early Fall victory, winning the Rees Jones Invitational at Haig Point on Daufuskie Island, S.C. The Owls finished with an 885 total to edge out South Florida and South Carolina by two shots each.
The Owls were led by Evans’ Austin Vick and Jimmy Beck of Columbus. Vick tied for 4th at 218, with Beck T6 at 219. Freshman Chris Guglielmo (Cumming) shot 70 in the first round and tied for 19th at 225. Kelby Burton (Evans) closed with a 71, the low score of the final round.
Kennesaw placed 3rd in the David Toms Intercollegiate in Baton Rouge, La., with an 860 total, 20 behind tournament winner SE Louisiana. Beck tied for 13th at 219. Beck shot even par 216 in the Carpet Capital to tie for 12th, with the Owls finishing back in the pack.
Mercer placed 4th and 2nd in its first two Fall tournaments. The Bears opened their schedule in Hattiesburg, Ms., shooting 7-under 845 to finish seven behind the winning total.
Rule led the Bears, tying for 7th at 6-under 207. Reimers shot 65 in the second round and tied for 10th at 208, with Beale closing with a 67 to tie for 19th at 211.
Mercer placed 2nd in the Cardinal Intercollegiate behind host Louisville, closing with scores of 284 and 282 to finish at even par 864, four behind the Cardinals. Beale shot 67-68 the final two rounds to place 5th at 213, with Rule T12 at 217 and Reimers shooting a final round 67 to tie for 16th at 218.
Georgia Southern placed 4th in its Fall opener in South Bend, Ind., led by McDonough’s Will Evans, who tied for 2nd, one shot behind the medalist. Evans posted a 4-under 209 total, with his 68 matching the low score in the second round. Fayetteville’s Christian Humber also shot 68 in the second round and tied for 12th for the Eagles at 215, with teammate Charlie Martin (LaGrange) the first round leader at 69.
The Eagles were 7th in the Shoal Creek Invitational in Birmingham, finishing at 11-over 875 after posting under-par scores of 287 and 285 the first two rounds. Evans tied for 3rd at 210 with scores of 68-69-73. Humber, Scott Wolfes (St. Simons) and Martin all shot one round in the 60s.
Augusta State tied for 6th in its season opener at Olympia Fields outside Chicago, finishing just six shots out of the 2nd place. Defending NCAA champion Alabama won the tournament. Antcliff, Alex Wennstrom and Jackson Stroup all tied for 12th for the Jaguars at 218.