OU Downed By Texas in Match Play Quarterfinals
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The No. 6 seed Oklahoma men’s golf team ended its run at the 2019 NCAA Championships on Tuesday, falling to No. 5 seed Texas, 3-2. The national tournament is being held at the par-72, 7,550-yard Blessings Golf Club.
“You've got to get three (match points) and we were kind of right there where we needed to be to get three and it just didn't work out. Texas is a really good squad and they've got great players who have done this,” OU head coach Ryan Hybl said. “Even though they might be a younger-looking team, a lot of their kids have played a lot of match play. So they've got many, many years of experience out there even though they might be young. I told our guys, just like last year, this is such a big-time learning experience, for a guy like (Garett) Reband to keep putting himself in that spot because next year it's going to be his time again and we've got to be ready for that.”
Oklahoma State, Texas, Vanderbilt and Wake Forest all earned spots in the match play semifinals. The semifinal round is set to take place on Tuesday afternoon with the championship match set for Wednesday.
Texas jumped out to a 1-0 lead as the Longhorns’ Cole Hammer defeated OU’s Patrick Welch, 7 and 5. Hammer grabbed the lead on hole No. 13 and extended his lead on the front nine.
The Sooners tied the match at 1-1 as senior Brad Dalke claimed 3 and 1 win over Texas’ Spencer Soosman. Dalke used a birdie on the par-4 hole No. 14 to take a 1 UP lead. The senior finished out his match with a birdie on No. 8 to defeat Soosman. Dalke finishes his collegiate career with a 6-1 record in NCAA match play competition.
Redshirt junior Quade Cummins quickly pushed OU’s lead to 2-1 as he topped Pierceson Coody, 2 and 1. The Weatherford, Okla., native took control of his match at the turn and finished the day with a par on hole No. 8 to put the Sooners in the lead.
From there, Texas’ Steven Chervony defeated OU’s Blaine Hale, 4 and 3, to even the match at 2-2.
Junior Garett Reband battled throughout the day in a back-and-forth match with the Longhorns’ Parky Coody. Reband was 1 down at the turn, but quickly took the lead with back-to-back wins on holes No. 3 and 4. To clinch the victory for Texas, Coody evened the match with a par on hole No. 6 and nailed a six-foot birdie putt on hole No. 8 to grab the lead for good.
Dalke finishes his career second all-time in OU history in career stroke average (72.06) and third in career rounds played (149). Hale posted the best stroke average in OU single-season history (70.67) and tied the program record for rounds at par or better (147).
The duo led the Sooners to the 2017 NCAA Championship and the 2018 Big 12 Championship. Dalke and Hale became the first two players to compete in the match play competition at the NCAA Championship for four consecutive years since the format was adopted in 2009.
“Brad and Blaine’s legacy is so far-reaching and the foundation they've been able to lay for us,” Hybl said. “There's guys even before them that have laid the foundation for our golf program, but these guys have done a phenomenal job and just continue to build on that foundation. They've left a big-time mark here. I'm just really proud of them and so thankful for everything they've been able to do for us and for our golf program.”
The Sooners made their fourth consecutive appearance in the match play competition, the only school in the nation to accomplish that feat. OU is also one of three schools to advance to the NCAA Championships in each of the last nine years, joining Illinois and Texas.