Early during the 2023 baseball season, Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn was …
Season ends as Razorbacks fall short in 3rd round of NCAAs
Arkansas golfer Mateo Fernandez De Oliveira watches his tee shot on the fourth hole during an NCAA golf tournament on Wednesday, Oct. 5, 2022, in Johnson. (AP Photo/Michael Woods).
For a moment Sunday afternoon, it appeared as if Arkansas had one final charge left at Grayhawk Golf Club.
But a trio of bogeys on the final three holes locked the Razorbacks out of at least one more day in their 2022-23 campaign.
Arkansas posted an 8-over 288 in the third round of the NCAA Men’s Golf Championship on Grayhawk’s Raptor Course. The Razorbacks climbed two spots, but at 30-over par for the week they missed out on today’s fourth and final round of stroke play.
Illinois ended Sunday atop the field of 30 teams at 6-under 834, while Ohio State and Texas Tech tied for 15th at 26-over 866.
Oklahoma then followed in 17th at 27-over, with the Razorbacks in 18th ahead of Texas (32-over) and San Francisco (33-over).
“It was a great week and I am super proud of our players,” Arkansas Coach Brad McMakin said. “They fought really hard today and got among the top 15 with four or five holes to play. We just could not overcome the hole we put ourselves in yesterday.”
The one Arkansas player with a shot to continue playing today is Mateo Fernandez de Oliveira, who, despite closing with bogeys on Nos. 7 and 9 — the Razorbacks began on the back nine — finished the first 54 holes with a score of 5-over par 215, including a 5-over 75 Sunday.
Buoyed by his first-round 4-under 66, Fernandez de Oliveira will be among the top nine individuals on non-advancing teams if Texas Tech can edge Ohio State in today’s playoff.
Should the Buckeyes win, Fernandez de Oliveira will go into a three-way playoff versus Texas Tech’s Matthew Commegys and Colorado’s Dylan McDermott.
Regardless of today’s results, Sunday marked the final round in Arkansas colors for the trio of Segundo Pinto, Julian Perico and Wil Gibson.
Pinto turned in the low round of the day for the Razorbacks with a bogey-free 3-under 67, while both Perico and Gibson carded 3-over 73s.
All three were part of the Razorbacks’ push on their second nine — Perico, Pinto and Gibson each birdied the 562-yard par-5 4th hole. Perico added another birdie on the par-3 5th.
“These seniors have been great ambassadors for our program,” McMakin said. “It was a great accomplishment to be just one of 13 teams to get here each of the last three years.”
McMakin went for one final throw of the dice, swapping out Manuel Lozada and plugging in junior Christian Castillo for the third round.
Castillo, however, logged double-bogeys on Nos. 9 and 18, and carded a 9-over par 79, matching the worst individual round of the weekend for Arkansas.
It was a bitter finish for a veteran group that had advanced to the fourth round in consecutive seasons, only to come up shy of reaching the match-play quarterfinals.
“They are great kids, they all graduated, they helped us recruiting and they have played unbelievably well,” McMakin said of Fernandez de Oliveira, Pinto, Perico and Gibson, all of whom will depart. “They will be hard to replace, and I am really going to miss them.”
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