March 16, 2014
TUSCON, Ariz. (SMU) - Led by second-place finished by Harry Higgs and Bryson Dechambeau, the SMU Mustangs tied for second with third-ranked Oklahoma State at the National Invitational Tournament hosted by Arizona. SMU finished the tournament at 18-under par to earn its third top-three result of the season.
Higgs and Dechambeau both finished the event at eight-under, giving Higgs his best three-round collegiate score versus par. Higgs carded a 70 in his final round and was five-under through eight holes, while Dechambeau posted his second score of 68 for the event.
"Harry and Bryson were great this week," SMU head coach Josh Gregory said. "The progress Harry has made this spring truly gives us a great one-two punch at the top of the lineup."
SMU posted the third-lowest team score for the final round, including beating both of the teams it was grouped with on Sunday - No. 2 California and No. 19 New Mexico. All five of SMU's players posted scores of par or better in the final round.
"This was a great week for us," Gregory said. "We really needed this for our confidence. It was also great to play with Cal and actually beat them head-to-head today. To have all five guys shoot even par or better in a final round is very encouraging."
Ryan Burgess tied for 17th overall at two-under after posting an even-par 72 on Sunday. Austin Smotherman carded his tournament-low score in the final round, also shooting a 72. Andrew Buchanan recorded an under-par score for the second straight day, carding a 71.
California won the tournament by 15 strokes over SMU and Oklahoma State, with San Diego State and UNLV tying for fourth to round out the top five. California's Joel Stalter won the individual title at 11-under, three strokes in front of Higgs, Dechambeau and Wyndham Clark of Oklahoma State.
Next up for SMU is a trip to West Palm Beach, Fla., for the Floridian Invitational on March 24-25.