The Bulls set a new single-round AAC Championship record with a 270.
BROOKSVILLE (April 23, 2021) – In their quest for a fifth conference championship, the USF Bulls surged out of the gate on Friday to open the 2021 American Athletic Conference Men’s Championship, setting a new AAC Championship single-round record by shooting 18-under-par 270.
That stellar opening round at Southern Hills Plantation Club stakes the Bulls a 15-stroke lead heading into round two on Saturday. Memphis is currently second at 285 (-3), followed by SMU and East Carolina at 1-under-par 287.
On a challenging back nine, USF tallied 14 birdies compared to just three bogies, and collectively shot six-under-par over the final three holes to arrive at the clubhouse with a new conference record and a sizeable lead.
A total of 13 golfers in the 40-player field shot under par in round one on Friday, including all five USF Bulls.
Senior Kyle Flexsenhar (Lake Mary) and sophomore Luke Gifford (Boca Raton) sit atop the individual leaderboard with Wichita State’s Marcus Wochner at 6-under-par 66 after day one. The round of 66 marks a new season low for both Flexsenhar and Gifford. Flexsenhar led all players in round one with seven total birdies, followed by Gifford with six.
USF’s leading scorer this season, Albin Bergstrom (Falsterbo, Sweden) is just two shots behind his teammates at 4-under-par 68. The sophomore carded five birdies on Monday. One of which came on the par-5 fifth when Bergstrom’s tee shot landed on the cart path. After discussing a drop with coaches and the rule’s official, he played the lie, landing his iron right in front of the green, and got up and down for the birdie.
Freshmen Sam Nicholson (Atlantic Beach) and Runchanapong Youprayong (Bangkok, Thailand) are both also inside the top 10 with opening rounds scores of 2-under-par 70. Nicholson’s 14 pars on the day led the Bulls.
· The round of 270 stands as the eight-lowest in program history.
· The Bulls collectively carded 25 birdies – six more than any other team.
· USF shot 7-under par on the par-4 holes and 12-under-par on the par-5 holes.
Head coach Steve Bradley on the results after round one: “All the guys played a pre-qualify tournament here on Wednesday, and you could see that comfort and confidence in Thursday’s practice round. They played great today. Shooting 18-under-par is an incredible round, but we’ve got 36 more holes to play, and we’ll need to keep up this level of play.”
On the Bulls’ back-nine scoring: “The back is a little harder than the front, but we took advantage of the par-5’s today, which has not been a strong suit for us. I was really impressed with the way we finished.”
Round two of the American Men’s Golf Championship begins at 8 a.m. on Saturday. The Bulls are slated to tee off in the final group starting at 10:08 a.m.
About USF Men’s Golf
USF men’s golf program has captured 16 conference titles and seen players earn 18 All-America honors. From 2015-18 the Bulls captured four consecutive American Athletic Conference Championship titles in wire-to-wire fashion, had three individual conference champions and have earned seven straight trips to NCAA Regionals. The program is led by Steve Bradley, who has been named American Athletic Conference Coach of the Year four times since taking over the program in 2014. The Bulls have posted 19 tournament wins under Bradley entering the 2021 season, by far the most under any coach in program history.
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