Chervony leads Longhorns to fifth straight top-10 finish

Hicks Layton

Just a 10 minute drive from the legendary Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia, the Longhorns began the final round of the Augusta Haskins Award Invitational in second place, two strokes behind leader Wake Forest.

Although the Longhorns put up a good fight, the team faced difficulties in the last few holes, collectively playing the last four at five-over par. Texas finished in third place behind South Carolina and eventual champion Wake Forest.

The tournament was contested over three rounds at Forest Hills Golf Club, a Donald Ross design where Bobby Jones began his 1930 Grand Slam of Golf. While the team grinded through 36 holes on Saturday, the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur Championship took place down the road at Augusta National, famed host course of the Masters Championship — the first of four major championships in men’s professional golf.

The Longhorns’ performance was driven by four top-10 individual finishes this week. Senior Steven Chervony sandwiched a second-round 70 with opening and closing rounds of 69 to post a solo fourth place finish, his third top 10 of the 2018-19 season. Freshman Cole Hammer started the final round in third place, but wasn’t able to carry the momentum into Sunday, shooting a one-over par 73 to slip back into a tie for fifth.

Hammer has finished in the top 10 in each of his starts this spring, including two runner-up finishes in which he lost back-to-back sudden death playoffs. Each one of his rounds have counted toward the team total since he first donned burnt orange as a Longhorn last fall. Head coach John Fields knows he is close to winning his first collegiate event.

“If he can create opportunities like that then at some point in time, he is going to close and I think he got valuable experience because of that,” Fields said. “There have been some real positives.”

Freshman Pierceson Coody shot the low round of the team in the opening round with an eight-under par 64, but played the last two rounds at one over, tying Hammer for fifth place individually. Junior Spencer Soosman had his best individual finish of the season with a tie for 10th place. Pierceson’s twin brother, Parker Coody, tied for 24th.

Texas has one more regular season event before the Big 12 Championship. The Longhorns will tee it up next in Arizona for the ASU Thunderbird Invitational. Play begins Friday, April 12.