Just a week removed from a fifth place finish at the Wyoming Cowboy Classic, the UC Davis men’s golf team took first place honors at the El Macero Classic, played on their home golf course. The Aggies were led by senior Matt Hansen, who won the individual first place trophy.
UC Davis led the tournament from the first round, squeaking by Cal State Fullerton for a two-stroke lead after the end of play on April 18. Senior Joshua Granger led UC Davis with an outstanding 5-under 67, two shy of the individual lead. He was helped by a clean round in which he shot no bogeys. Sophomore Luke Vivolo shot a 2-under 70 to add to the lead, while Hansen finished at an even 72.
The second day saw the Aggies significantly widen their lead, jumping a full 18 strokes ahead of second-place Cal State Fullerton. Vivolo led the way after scoring three birdies on the front nine, finishing at a 4-under 68. Hansen, meanwhile, placed himself in contention for the individual award after shooting a relatively mistake free 3-under 69.
The final day belonged to Hansen, who clinched his second career individual win after shooting a 3-under 69 with no bogeys to end the tournament at six under par. Hansen’s last win was in 2011, giving the senior a great victory to close out his career.
“I’m so happy for him. He’s been close a lot and it’s good to see him get a win,” said UC Davis coach Cy Williams after the win.
The great play of Hansen was complemented by top 10 finishes for several other Aggies, including Vivolo and redshirt freshman Nicholas Noya who tied for sixth. UC Davis finished the weekend 16 strokes ahead of second place Cal State Fullerton, while beating the third place team by 26.
“I’ve been really proud of our guys all week,” said coach Williams. “Everyone contributed big.”
With the win, the Aggies will hopefully have scored some added confidence heading into the Big West Championships in San Jacinto, Calif. from April 27 to April 29. UC Davis has had some success at the Championships over the past two years, finishing in third place last year and taking home the first place trophy two seasons ago.
RYAN REED can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.