Razorbacks finish second at Sea Best Invitational

By: Tom Murphy
Published: Tuesday, February 6, 2018
Arkansas senior Alvraro Ortiz finished with a pair of double bogeys en route to a 76 in the final round to tie for 27th.
Photo by Arkansas Athletic Communications
Arkansas senior Alvraro Ortiz finished with a pair of double bogeys en route to a 76 in the final round to tie for 27th.

No. 20 Arkansas lost a four-shot lead in four holes midway through the final round of the Sea Best Invitational to finish behind South Florida in the season-opening tournament on Tuesday at Ponta Vedra Beach, Fla.

The Bulls had a five-shot lead going into the final hole before Claudio Correa shot a quadruple-bogey 8 to give South Florida a one-stroke victory.

Arkansas fired a team-record tying 13 under in the second round on Monday to grab a four-stroke lead, but could not maintain that performance, carding a 6 over at the par 70 Dye's Valley course at the TPC Sawgrass. The Razorbacks' team score of 5 under fell one shot behind South Florida, which had a 1 over on Tuesday for the best round of the day. Liberty (-1) was the only other team under par in the 14-team tournament.

The Razorbacks were first among the five teams from the SEC and Atlantic Coast Conferences, well ahead of fourth-place No. 11 LSU (+2), fifth-place No. 28 Tennessee (+3), No. 24 North Carolina (+10), which tied Jacksonville for sixth, and No. 23 Duke (+40), which came in 12th.

Sophomore Luis Garza carded an even-par 70, with three birdies offsetting a bogey and a double bogey and tied for fifth to lead the Razorbacks. Sophomore Mason Overstreet tied for eighth with a final round 69. Sophomore William Buhl shot 2 over 72 and finished alone in 15th place, while senior Alvraro Ortiz had a pair of double bogeys en route to a 76 in the final round to tie for 27th. Freshman Tyson Reeder had a counting score of 5 over on Tuesday and tied for 53rd.

Ervin Chang of Liberty won a playoff for medalist honors after tying Eric Ansett of Lipscomb and William Register of North Carolina at 6 under, one stroke ahead of Lorenzo Scalise of Tennessee.

The Razorbacks led the field with 45 birdies, finished second behind Liberty with a 4.06 average and an 11 over on the par 4s, and second behind South Florida with a 4.77 average and a 7 under on the par 5s. The Razorbacks were tied for fifth with a 3.07 average, a 4 over, on the par 3s.

Arkansas, which won the Gopher Invitational and finished second in two other tournaments in the fall, returns to action on Feb. 17 as the defending champion in the SunTrust Gator Invitational in Gainesville, Fla.

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