The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

Men’s Golf: No. 1 Vanderbilt concludes season in bitter fashion, underperforms at NCAA Championships

Following a historic regular season, which included a program record six tournament titles, the Vanderbilt Commodores fell short at the NCAA Championships.
Cole+Sherwood+and+coach+Scott+Limbaugh+looking+over+a+shot+on+April+22%2C+2023+%28Vanderbilt+Athletics%29.
Vanderbilt Athletics
Cole Sherwood and coach Scott Limbaugh looking over a shot on April 22, 2023 (Vanderbilt Athletics).

Vanderbilt Men’s Golf’s season abruptly came to an end on Monday. After four rounds of stroke play at the NCAA Championships, the Commodores were unable to move on to the match play round. Of the 15 teams competing at Grayhawk Golf Club, 8 teams moved on to the stroke play portion of the tournament. Vanderbilt’s 11th-place finish was disappointing, especially after the No. 1 Commodores made school history by winning six tournament titles in the regular season.

The Commodores also placed second at the SEC Championships and the NCAA Auburn Regional.

“As time moves on, we’ll look back on certainly one of the best seasons that we’ve had at Vanderbilt,” head coach Scott Limbaugh told The Hustler. “This is just the way it goes sometimes in sports, and we just have to kind of keep pushing forward and learning from our mistakes and our failures.”

Vanderbilt had a strong showing on day one of stroke play, posting a 2-over 282. The Commodores were led by junior Cole Sherwood, who scored a 4-under 66 that featured six birdies. Sherwood was followed by Reid Davenport, Gordon Sargent and William Moll.

On day two, Vanderbilt carded an 8-over 288. Riedel bounced back from a 77 on day one with an even-par 70 on Saturday. The senior birdied two of his first four holes, leading to a 1-under 34 on the front nine. Riedel was followed by a 71 from Moll, a 73 from Sargent and a 74 from Sherwood. With just two days left of stroke play, the Commodores were sitting in sixth place.

On the third day of the competition, Vanderbilt slipped two spots to eighth place. Moll shot a 2 under 68, which included four birdies made. Moll was followed by a pair of 71s from Sherwood and Davenport. Vanderbilt’s star, Sargent — the No. 1 collegiate golfer and the 2022 NCAA Individual Champion — posted a 73 on Sunday. Sargent was followed by Riedel.

“We just had a little bit of inconsistencies throughout the lineup,” Limbaugh said. “Gordon [Sargent] had his only off week of the year…We just didn’t have enough people stepping on up.”

With 18 holes to play and their season on the line, the Commodores were unable to crack into the top eight and move on to match play. Sunday was an underwhelming day for Vanderbilt, especially on the 18th hole. On the final hole, the five Commodores that counted for score combined to shoot 9 over par on that hole alone. Sargent’s 1-under 69 was impressive, but it was not enough to keep Vanderbilt’s season alive. Sherwood, Moll and Riedel each shot a 3-over 73, and Davenport shot a 74. The Commodores finished Monday with a 288 and an overall score of 1,141 (+21) to tie in 11th place. 

“Golf is like any sport. It’s all about being good at the right times, and we just weren’t good at the right time today,” Limbaugh said. “I’ll continue to learn to be a better coach and a better leader for these guys and learn from these moments, but we certainly just weren’t peaking at the right time. The teams that end up winning these things peak at the right time. We’ve made a habit out of being able to do that and this year, we just didn’t.”

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About the Contributor
Andrew Wilf, Sports Editor
Andrew Wilf (’24) is Sports Editor for The Vanderbilt Hustler. He is from Livingston, N.J., and is majoring in history and minoring in business. He joined the sports staff his freshman year, previously serving as a Staff Writer, Assistant Sports Editor and Deputy Sports Editor. Beyond writing for The Hustler, he is also the host of Anchor Analysis, Commodore Clash and Live From West End. In his free time, Andrew enjoys watching the NFL and playing golf. He can be reached at [email protected].
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