The fifth-ranked UCLA men's golf team played the final three holes in 5 under par to capture the Mercedes-Benz Collegiate Championship Tuesday at the Sawgrass Country Club in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.
In windy and wet conditions, the Bruins held off Texas Tech for their first title of 2006 and fourth this season.
'This win is a great boost for us,' said assistant coach Gus Montano. 'We wanted to come East and play this course because it's similar to the setup we will see at the national championship course.'
The Bruins posted a 54-hole total of 896 (+32), the second highest victorious score in tournament history. They held off Texas Tech, which posted a three-round score of 901 (+37). Alabama and South Carolina tied for third at 905 (+41) and Georgia State placed fifth at 912 (+48).
Individually, no UCLA players broke par in the final round, but all five combined to play the final three holes in five under par. Freshman Erik Flores finished second overall at 218 (+2) with a final round 74. After posting a 39 (+3) at the turn and a bogey at the 11th hole to go to four-over par on the day, Flores rallied to birdie the 16th and 18th holes for a 74 (+2). Freshman James Lee was seven-over par on the day before closing with an eagle-birdie finish for a 76 (+4). He tied for 25th at 230 (+14). Junior Chris Heintz, five-over par at the 17th, eagled the final hole for a 75 (+3) and tied for 41st. Sophomores Daniel Im and Kevin Chappell both played the last three holes in even par. Im tied for 37th at 232 (+16) and Chappell tied for sixth at 223 (+7) despite a final round 77 (+5).
Texas Tech's Oscar Floren was medalist after posting a final round 73 (+1) for a 54-hole score of 217 (+1).
1. UCLA +32 290-304-302-896
2. Texas Tech +37 301-295-305-901
T3. Alabama, U. of +41 300-300-305-905
T3. South Carolina +41 308-297-300-905
5. Georgia State Univ. +48 304-294-3140-912
6. Louisiana State U. +49 308-290-315-913
7. Florida +50 320-289-305-914
8. Tennessee, Univ. of +52 313-301-302-916
9. North Florida, U. of +56 308-305-307-920
10. Auburn +62 313-299-314-926
11. Missouri, U. of +63 312-302-313-927
12. Coastal Carolina +64 319-300-309-928
13. Texas-Arlington +67 309-307-315-931
14. UAB +70 318-308-308-934
15. Mercer University +90 317-324-313-954