April 20, 2008
New London, NC — Ben Martin fired a final round 70 and finished eighth overall to lead Clemson to a sixth-place team finish at the 55th annual ACC Men’s Golf Tournament. The 54-hole event completed Sunday was played at par 72 The Old North State Club at New London, NC.
Florida State won the title with a 26-under par score of 838. Duke was second at 841, while North Carolina was third at 846. Georgia Tech finished with a 17-under par score of 847. There was a two hour rain delay on Sunday. Tech was 18 under prior to the delay and five over par as a team after the delay. Wake Forest was fifth at 848 and Clemson was sixth at 854, four shots ahead of NC State. When Clemson finished it was five shots behind NC State, but the Pack stumbled down the stretch.
Martin finished with a 54-hole score of 211. It was his second top 10 finish of the year, his first since the opening tournament of the year in Japan back in September. It was his best finish in any tournament since he was third at the Carpet Classic in the first event of his career in the fall of 2006. Martin had rounds of 73-68-70 at the ACC Tournament for his 211 total. It was his best 54-hole event of the year by four shots.
The sophomore from Greenwood, SC got off to a great start on Sunday with birdies on the first two holes. He then stumbled on the par four ninth hole when he made a triple bogey. He hit his second shot into some bushes and hit his third shot over the green into the woods on the other side of the green.
But, Martin came back strong with a birdie on the next hole. He then finished with birdies on 17 and 18 to record his second under-par round of the tournament. His birdie on 17 was the result of a 20 foot putt. He made birdie on 18 when he got up and down from in front of the green. Over his last 37 holes he made 11 birdies, just one bogey and the triple bogey. Had he pared the ninth hole on Sunday he would have finished third.
Sam Saunders and David May both had even par scores of 72 on Sunday. May finished with a 214 total for the three rounds, good enough for 20th place. It was the third straight top 20 finish for May at the ACC Tournament. Saunders had his best round of the tournament on Sunday. He started with consecutive birdies and had a birdie on the 18th hole.
Kyle Stanley was Clemson’s second best golfer for the ACC Tournament. The sophomore All-American shot a 73 on Sunday and finished with a 213 total, good enough for 18th place. He had a round of 68 on Saturday for his top round of the tournament. Phillip Mollica had a 74 on Sunday and finished with a 218 total for the three days, 29th place.
Clemson will now await an NCAA regional bid. The regional will be held May 15-17 at three different sites.
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