Texas Longhorns men’s golf holds off late Arizona State charge to win fourth national championship

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Texas won the national title that eluded its current seniors three years ago.

No tornadoes, no disappointments, just one clutch after another.

Travis Vick putted two 30-footers on the 18th hole to beat Cameron Sisk and Texas won its fourth national championship by fending off Arizona State’s late charge for a 3-2 victory on Wednesday.

“Everything makes sense and the adversity we’ve faced has only made us stronger,” Texas senior Parker Coody said.

Texas lost the 2019 title to Stanford, in part due to weather. Severe storm forecasts pushed the Championship tee times to just before dawn and the Longhorns were out of shape in the 3-2 loss.

Texas spent the next three years trying to come back, battling through moments under pressure to reach the last eight of the NCAA championships. The Longhorns appeared to break free in quarterfinal wins over Oklahoma State and Vanderbilt, which continued into the Finals against Arizona State even as the games grew close.

Vick closed it, but it was far from easy.

He led 2 with three holes to play, but missed a par putt 15 feet on the 16th hole at Grayhawk Golf Course to see his lead reduced to one. Sisk missed a chance to equalize when he left an 8-foot birdie putt short after driving it through the short par-4 17th.

Sisk fired his second shot on the par-4 18th hole left in the bunker and hit it 4 feet out, leaving Vick with two putts to win the national championship. He hit it inches from the cut, sending the Longhorns charging onto the green with their first national title since 2012.

“Today you see a bunch of men in front of you,” Texas coach John Fields said. “They may not have started that way four or five years ago, but they are today and I’m really proud of them.”

Arizona State was the top seed a year ago at Grayhawk but couldn’t get past Oklahoma in the semifinals. The Sun Devils got some revenge by defeating the Sooners in the quarterfinals on Tuesday and defeated defending national champion Pepperdine in the afternoon semifinals.

Arizona State looked to be in trouble on the back nine against Texas, trailing in three games after Parker Coody routed James Leow 6-5.

The Sun Devils rallied, creating tense moments on the stretch.

“You obviously want to be in place, but at the same time we have a lot of trust in each other,” said David Puig of Arizona State, who beat Mason Nome 1 in 19 holes. “The match is not over, we still believe in it, and that’s what we did. We missed, but it was close.”

It was sure.

After Coody’s victory, Arizona State’s Mason Andersen tied the championship game with a 3 and 2 win over Cole Hammer.

Pierceson Coody, Parker’s twin, closed his match with Preston Summerhays 2 and 1 by getting up for a birdie on the par-4 17th short on Grahawk’s Raptor Course. Summerhays drove it just off the green and missed a 4-foot birdie before Coody’s 3-footer fell.

Texas junior Mason Nome had a 1-1 birdie lead on the par-4 14th, but David Puig tied the game with a birdie on the par-4 No. 17.

Nome then hit a tree left of the fairway on the 520-yard par-4 18th hole, leaving it 243 yards from the green. He hit it across the green and made a par putt from 20 feet after Puig narrowly missed a birdie, sending the game to extra holes.

Nome spun his ball from the par-4 10th hole and lost holes 2 and 1, but didn’t have to worry about it, with Vick winning the title a few hundred yards away.

“Obviously it’s a painful loss,” Arizona State coach Matt Thurmond said. “You don’t get a chance to win a national championship very often and we had a chance at the very end. And it takes so much to get there.”

Something the Longhorns are well aware of.