Men’s Golf: Vanderbilt finishes tied for third at Tiger Invitational

The 14th-ranked Vanderbilt Commodores battled through a rain-interrupted schedule for a solid result in Alabama.


Matthew Shannon/AU Athletics

Vanderbilt men’s golf participated in the Tiger Invitational this past week. (Matthew Shannon/Auburn Athletics).

Francis Sheehy, Staff Writer

The Vanderbilt Commodores competed in the fifteen-team Tiger Invitational at the Grand National Lake Course in Opelika, Alabama between March 15 and March 17. Disrupted by thunderstorms, the first two rounds were played on Monday, and the tournament concluded on Wednesday. Through inconsistent weather, the Commodores’ consistent scores led them to a tie for third place. 

“We had great spurts of winning golf,” head coach Scott Limbaugh said. “We just weren’t able to sustain it as a team, and that’s OK. It’s just not OK if we’re not able to learn from that.”

The first round saw the Commodores shoot a combined 283, five shots under par and tied for fourth place. Vanderbilt was headlined by senior Harrison Ott, who shot a three-under 69 with no bogeys. Junior Michael Shears shot a 70 to open the week at 12th place individually. Shears was not listed in Vanderbilt’s five-man team lineup, so his score was counted only as an individual. Junior Reid Davenport, sophomore Matthew Riedel and freshman Cole Sherwood all recorded eagles to cement Vanderbilt’s strong start.

In the second round of the day, the Commodores shot another 283 to remain tied for fourth with the Tennessee Volunteers. Riedel bounced back from an opening round 81 to lead the team with a 69. The Commodores found more consistency in the second round with no double bogeys or worse as a team. Ott, Davenport and sophomore William Moll all finished the day in the top-25 of the individual standings, with the team ten shots behind the leading Auburn Tigers.

The third and final round of the event took place over Tuesday and Wednesday due to two weather suspensions. Vanderbilt’s team of five recorded a combined 16 birdies on the front nine in the third round out of forty-five holes. Moll had the team’s strongest closing score as his 70 secured him a -4 finish and an individual tie for thirteenth. 

“He’s about as consistent as any player in the SEC this year.,” Limbaugh said of Moll. 

Moll was joined in the top-20 by Ott, whose 72 left him at -3. Davenport ended -2, Sherwood and Shears were both +2 and Riedel finished +5.

In aggregate, the Commodores scored a 285 in the final round, giving them an overall score of -13, tied for third with the LSU Tigers. It is their second consecutive finish in the top-three of a tournament. Vanderbilt finished 13 shots behind the first-place Auburn Tigers, the tournament’s hosts. 

“The championship season is right around the corner, so we got a lot of work to do,” Limbaugh said. “But we got a team that really likes to compete. They really like each other, they’re fun to coach.”

Next up for the Commodores is the Old Waverly Collegiate in Mississippi, a three-day event beginning March 26.