CLEMSON, S.C. — Jacob Bridgeman birdied two of the final three holes to finish with a one-under-par 71 on Tuesday to lead Clemson to a fifth-place finish out of 14 teams at the Watersound Invitational at the par 72 Shark’s Tooth Golf Club in Panama City, Fla.
The event was a preview of the ACC Championship, which will be played at the same course, April 22-25. The Watersound Invitational featured 12 ACC teams and two from the SEC. Nationally, it featured five top 20 teams and 10 of the top 37 according to the Golfstat.com rankings.
Georgia Tech won the tournament with an 849 score, five shots ahead of Alabama. Notre Dame, ranked 15th in the nation, finished third at 858 and Virginia Tech was fourth at 862. The Tigers were fifth at 864, one shot ahead of fourth-ranked North Carolina, and three shots ahead of sixth-ranked Arkansas. Clemson defeated 12th ranked Wake Forest by 18 shots, giving the Tigers three wins over top 12 teams.
Canon Claycomb of Alabama won the tournament with a 202 score, eight shots ahead of his nearest competitor.
Clemson shot a two-over-par score of 290 as a team on Tuesday. It was a close race for the middle of the standings as the teams ranked fourth through 10th were separated by just 11 shots.
Bridgeman finished in a tie for fourth for the 36 holes with among others Palmer Jackson of Notre Dame, the fourth ranked player in the nation. Bridgeman had rounds of 73-68-71 for his 212 score. His performance included 14 birdies, also fourth best in the field. The Clemson senior made birdies on the 16th and 17th holes of the day to move the Tigers ahead of the Tar Heels by one shot. Bridgeman had a 34 on the back nine, the best back-nine score by a Clemson player all week.
It was Bridgeman’s second top 10 finish of the year and the 14th of his career. He now has 53 under-par rounds in his career.
Kyle Cottam also played well down the stretch, recording two birdies in his last three holes to finish with a 73 on Tuesday and an even-par 216 for the tournament, good enough for 22nd place.
Kian Rose and Colby Patton had the exact same score each of the three days of the tournament to finish in 28th place at two-over-par 218. Rose led the Tigers in pars for the three days with 38, while Patton’s performance included eight birdies and an eagle.
Zack Gordon finished with a 74 on Tuesday, the same score he had in the first round to finish in 52nd place.
Clemson returns to the course March 7 at the Pinehurst Invitational at Pinehurst #2 in North Carolina.
Watersound InvitationalShark’s Tooth Golf CoursePar 72, Yards: 7,202Panama City, Fla.Feb. 20-22, 2022