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.

Jackson Van Paris earns top-10 finish in PGA TOUR debut

Jackson Van Paris finished in a tie for 10th at the Puerto Rico Open.
Jackson+Van+Paris+swinging+his+3-wood.+%28Vanderbilt+Athletics%29
Vanderbilt Athletics
Jackson Van Paris swinging his 3-wood. (Vanderbilt Athletics)

Jackson Van Paris, a junior on the Vanderbilt Men’s Golf team, secured a top-10 finish in his PGA TOUR debut at the Puerto Rico Open. Van Paris rallied on Sunday to shoot a final round 64 to vault 40 places up the leaderboard. Van Paris earned his spot in the tournament by finishing third in the Elite Amateur Series this past summer. 

Van Paris began the tournament with a 2-under 70 in round one. The amateur had four birdies in what was a solid start to the tournament. In round two, Van Paris again shot 70 to sit at a 4-under 140 total after two days. As the other players finished their rounds, Van Paris knew that he would need some luck to make the cut and secure a tee time on the weekend. Van Paris made the cut on the number after 72 players finished at 4-under or better.

With two more rounds of golf secured, Van Paris headed into the weekend with some confidence. After shooting 69 in round three, he was in a tie for 50th as the final round approached. 

In the fourth and final round of the weekend, Van Paris vaulted himself into a tie for 10th after a stellar 8-under 64. This marked the lowest round of the tournament by any player. 

An eagle on the par-5 second hole ignited Van Paris’ round as he proceeded to make three birdies on his front nine. Sitting at 5-under through nine holes was impressive enough, but Van Paris decided to keep his foot on the gas pedal. Three birdies on his final four holes pushed him near the top of the leaderboard as he sat as the clubhouse leader for several hours. He finished the day with no bogeys, six birdies and an eagle to cap off an excellent PGA TOUR debut. 

Van Paris continues to be a key contributor to the Vanderbilt Men’s Golf team and this strong showing on the professional stage should be a confidence boost as the Commodores approach postseason play. 

Following a fantastic fall season, in which Van Paris won the St. Andrews Links Collegiate, he seems to be cementing himself as a top player in college golf. Van Paris currently sits at No. 25 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings, but his ranking will likely improve after the Puerto Rico Open is included in his results. 

Vanderbilt Men’s Golf 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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