Wake Forest Wins 2022 ACC Men’s Golf Championship
PANAMA CITY BEACH, Florida. – With a birdie on the third playoff hole, Wake Forest’s Alex Fitzpatrick lifted the Demon Deacons to a 3-2 win in the 2022 Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s Golf Championship at Watersound’s Shark’s Tooth Golf Course Club. The ACC championship is the 19th for Wake Forest — breaking a tie with Georgia Tech for the most golf titles of any school — and the first since 1989.
Wake Forest also won the Women’s Golf Championship last weekend at The Reserve Golf Course in Pawleys Island, South Carolina, and is only the second school in league history to win the Men’s titles. and female during the same season. Duke also won both in 2005, 2013 and 2017.
“I’m so happy for these young men,” said Wake Forest head coach Jerry Haas, who is in his 24th season. “Everyone contributed this week, everyone scored a point. Our goal was to finish in the top four (in stroke play), and Michael Brennan was eye-catching at 8th and 9th on Saturday. We scratched three points one way or another (Sunday against North Carolina). Today it looked like they were going to win, then it looked like we were going to win and it was very appropriate that we put in some extra holes.
Fitzpatrick took an early lead with a birdie on the first hole and led throughout the game until Georgia Tech rookie Benjamin Reuter tied it with a birdie on the par-5 17th. The two traded pars on the No. 18 and headed to the front nine for some extra holes. Both players pared on numbers 1 and 2, but Reuter’s drive on the par-5 third hole was just to the right, hiding him slightly from the green. He pulled his approach into the woods to the left of the green and had to take a drop.
Fitzpatrick’s approach landed just behind the green, and he slid less than two feet. Reuter’s chip slid through the hole and latched onto the back of the green, leaving a 15-foot long putt. After his putt missed the cut, he conceded the match to Fitzpatrick, who was joined by his teammates for a celebration on the third green.
“It was an incredible day full of ups and downs and a lot of nerves,” said Fitzpatrick, from Sheffield, England. “Just an amazing day and I’m very lucky to have people around me, as well as the University and all the support at home. To be able to do this for them is amazing.
Georgia Tech started the tightly contested game with Christo Lamprecht picking up an impressive 5&4 victory over Mark Power. The South African sophomore quickly moved to a 3UP lead after a birdie on the No. 4, then won holes 12 and 13 to move to 5UP with five to play. His par on No. 14 gave the Yellow Jackets a 1-0 lead.
Wake Forest’s Parker Gillam provided the Deacs with their first point with a 2UP win over Connor Howe. The two traded leads throughout the match and came in the 18th with Gillam holding a one-hole lead. After a mammoth drive, Gilliam’s approach landed three feet from the hole and the match was conceded after Howe missed the greenside bunker.
Bartley Forrester scored Georgia Tech’s second point with a 4&2 victory over Scotty Kennon, taking the lead on the fourth hole and heading for victory. He closed the match with a birdie on the No. 16.
With Georgia Tech needing just one point to win, Ross Steelman put on a terrific comeback against Wake’s Michael Brennan, winning the 11th, 12th, 13th, 15th and 16th holes to go 4-1 with two to go. player. Brennan, who birdied back-to-back in Saturday’s stroke play competition to secure Wake Forest’s place in match play, birdied the No. 17 to set up a duel against the No. 18. Both players landed excellent approach shots with Brennan inside four feet and Steelman about 10 feet above the hole. Steelman’s birdie putt slipped and Brennan calmly hit the winning putt to even the score and set up the final group’s dramatic finish.
Monday’s game was broadcast live on ACC Network Extra. A recap show of the ACC Men’s Golf Championship will air on the ACC Network on May 2 at 7 p.m.
Both teams now turn their sights to the NCAA regional competition which will take place May 15-18. Teams coming out of regionals will compete in the national championship in Scottsdale, Ariz., May 27-June 1.
Monday Match Play Finals – No. 4 Wake Forest def. Georgia Tech, No. 2, 3-2
Game 1: Christo Lamprecht, Georgia Tech def. Mark Power, Wake Forest
Game 2: Parker Gillam, Wake Forest def. Connor Howe, Georgia Tech, 2UP
Game 3: Michael Brennan, Wake Forest def. Ross Steelman, Georgia Tech, 1UP
Game 4: Bartley Forrester, Georgia Tech def. Scotty Kennon, Wake Forest, 4&2
Game 5: Alex Fitzpatrick, Wake Forest def. Benjamin Reuter, Georgia Tech, 21 holes (won match on hole #3)