BRASELTON, Ga. – A pair of Jacksonville men's golfers placed in the top five at the ASUN Championship for the first time since 2006, as play in the 2018 edition of the tournament concluded Tuesday afternoon.
After play was called off for Monday due to heavy rains that swept through the area, round two of the shortened 36-hole affair commenced at 1:00 p.m. Tuesday on the Legends Course at Chateau Elan in Braselton, Ga. The decision was made to abridge the the second round, which was played as a par-70, 6577 course.
Following a strong start to his first round of ASUN postseason play, freshman Michael Sakane shot on-over 71 the second time around to finish even, 142 (71 + 71). The ASUN Freshman of the Year split fifth place with No. 38 Raul Pereda, who fired off five birdies in the second round to turn in the second-lowest score, a three-under 67, to finish even, 142 (75 + 67). Competing in his fourth and final ASUN Tournament, the senior registered his best finish to-date, after placing T-8, T-15 and T-7 the previous three years. The pair's finish qualified them to place on the ASUN All-Tournament Team, marking the first time in either's career making the squad.
The performance from the 'Phins five-man team allowed the squad to place third out of seven competitors in the field, matching its finish from 2017. Entering the day in fourth place, JU shot four-over 284 in the second round to finish two strokes ahead of two-time defending champion Kennesaw State, carding 18-over 586 for the event.
Tuesday's action featured a pair of birdies each from sophomore Eduardo Carrete (seven-over 149, 78 + 71) and freshman Aaeri Krishnan (12-over 154, 78 + 75), who both knocked In their best rounds of the tournament to finish tied for 17th and tied for 27th, respectively. Seeing action at the ASUN Championship for the second straight year, senior Elliott Fullalove finished 30th, carding 16-over 158 (78 + 80).
For the fifth time in school history, North Florida captured the conference title, winning a back-and-forth battle with Lipscomb for the lead. The No. 26 team in the nation, who sat one stroke behind the Bisons at the day's start, shot one-under 279 in round two to finish the job, ultimately winning by five strokes with four-under 564 (285 + 279).
Lipscomb senior Dawson Armstrong became the first ASUN golfer since 2010 to claim multiple medalist honors, putting forth four birdies and an eagle on the final 18 holes to card four-under 66, the lowest single round of the event. The number 17th ranked golfer finished seven-under, 135 (69 + 66) in the winning effort, edging out UNF's Andrew Alligood (four-under 138, 69 + 69) by three strokes.
Ranked No. 60 in the most recent GolfStat poll released on April 18, Jacksonville will now wait to see if it is selected for what would be a second consecutive at-large bid to a 2018 NCAA Regional. After earning a spot for the first time in school history last season, the 'Phins advanced to their first-ever NCAA National Championship, following a win in a sudden-death tiebreaker with Northwestern. This year's selection show will on the Golf Channel on May 2 at 5:30 p.m. EST.