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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: Vanderbilt takes fourth at Cabo Collegiate

Despite a strong performance from William Moll, the Commodores were unable to conquer a loaded field in Cabo.
Vanderbilt Athletics
Gordon Sargent swings an iron at the Cabo Collegiate, as photographed on March 4, 2024. (Vanderbilt Athletics)

After a stellar performance at the Watersound Invitational last month, the No. 3 Vanderbilt Men’s Golf team returned to action at the Cabo Collegiate from March 3-5. The Commodores struggled to gain momentum across three rounds, taking fourth place at the par-71 Twin Dolphin Club. Vanderbilt finished the tournament with a total score of +1, which was 20 strokes behind winner Arizona State. 

Gordon Sargent, Matthew Riedel, Cole Sherwood, William Moll and Wells Williams started for the Commodores while John Broderick competed as an individual. Jackson Van Paris is set to compete at the Puerto Rico Open on the PGA TOUR this week, so he did not compete with the team at the Cabo Collegiate. 

On Day One, the Commodores shot a collective 3-over 287 to sit in fourth place after 18 holes. Moll set the pace for the Commodores, carding a 2-under 69 to jump into a tie for eighth place individually. Despite a double bogey to start his back nine, Moll made five birdies on the day to lead the Commodores. 

“I’m proud of William and the way he stepped up today and helped the team,” head coach Scott Limbaugh said. “He put in a lot of good practice after the first event and came out ready to play.”

Sherwood put together an even-par 71 in round one, capped off by three birdies. 

Sargent and Williams both struggled to gain momentum in round one, shooting 73 and 74, respectively. Sargent had two double bogeys on the day which prevented him from pushing into red figures. 

“As a team, we got off to a good start and battled well, but we didn’t finish the round to our standards which was disappointing,” Limbaugh said. “This course requires a lot of mental toughness and focus on every single shot because you just can’t get away with lapses in that area here.”

On Day Two, the Commodores needed to shoot much better in order to vault themselves back into contention for the team title. They did just that, shooting a 5-under 279 to sit in fourth place and get within seven strokes of the leader. 

Moll continued his exceptional play, putting together another under-par round. He shot a 3-under 68 to sit inside the top five heading into the third round. His round was highlighted by six birdies and a bogey-free back nine. 

After shooting a 78 on Sunday, Riedel shot a 68 on Monday. Riedel’s excellent performance in round two moved him up 34 spots on the individual leaderboard to sit in a tie for 32nd after round two. 

“It’s exciting to see William put another solid score together and he looked in control of his game all day,” Limbaugh said. “It was great to see Matthew bounce back after a tough first round and he really gave the team a spark we had to have.”

Sargent made an astounding eight birdies in his second round, but back-to-back double bogeys on his back nine and an array of bogeys elsewhere forced him to settle for a 72. 

Another even-par 71 for Sherwood placed him in a tie for 20th heading into round three. Williams struggled on Monday, shooting 76. 

Broderick, playing as an individual, shot a personal-best on Day Two, firing a 6-under 65 to jump up the individual leaderboard. Unfortunately for Vanderbilt, his score did not count towards the overall team score. 

“We need to come out tomorrow and be a little sharper in all parts of the game both physically and mentally,” Limbaugh after round two. “All the little things will matter tomorrow and we need to embrace doing them at a higher level.”

On Day Three, Vanderbilt needed to post low numbers in order to make a move up the leaderboard. Sitting in fourth place after two rounds, the Commodores had seven shots to make up on a difficult golf course. The Commodores were unable to beat the deficit, shooting a 3-over 287 to finish in fourth place. 

“I know our guys wanted to come out and try to finish strong today, but we just never could get momentum and we probably pressed a little bit,” Limbaugh said after round three. “However, I am really proud of the way we battled because that is the fibers of Vandy golf, to fight with whatever game you have.”

Moll notched his third top-10 finish of the season, shooting 72 in the final round to earn a tie for seventh. An unfortunate start to his back nine, in which he made two bogeys and a double bogey, pushed him out of contention for the individual title. However, two birdies on his final three holes allowed him to surge up the individual leaderboard in a competitive field.

Sargent once again struggled to keep the big numbers off his scorecard, making three double bogeys over his round. A final round 74 pushed him into a tie for 38th, his worst individual finish this season. 

A final round 69 for Sherwood meant he would finish in the top 20. Three birdies and a sole bogey pushed him into a tie for 14th.

Williams shot 74 in round three, finishing the tournament in a tie for 56th. Riedel finished in a tie for 30th. 

“This was a great learning experience and it will be nice to get home and get back to work to improve on some things that we need to do better,” Limbaugh said. “I love this team and we always own our results together. This game rewards you when you are tough enough to do the right things over and over again.”

Winning has become the standard for Limbaugh’s squad, but Vanderbilt was unable to find the momentum to defend its title in Cabo. 

Vanderbilt will return to action at the Pauma Valley Invitational from March 18-19 in Pauma Valley, Calif.

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About the Contributor
Henry Oelhafen
Henry Oelhafen, Deputy Sports Editor
Henry Oelhafen (‘26) is a student in Peabody College majoring in human and organizational development and minoring in business. Henry grew up as a Vanderbilt sports fan and loves to talk about both professional and amateur golf. In addition to writing, he loves to play golf with friends, hike and try new restaurants. He can be reached at [email protected].
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