By Kenneth Cline
The Baylor men’s golf team placed second at the UTSA Oak Hills Invitational in San Antonio that ended on Tuesday.
As a team, the Bears shot 29-over-par 881 to finish five-strokes behind fellow Big 12 opponent Oklahoma. This marks the fourth time, in six tournaments this season that Baylor has finished in the top 3. It is the highest finish in a tournament field of more than 12 teams. Head coach Greg Priest said he could not have been more proud of his team.
“I think we had a chance to win the golf tournament, but we had a couple of big numbers out there today,” Priest said. “Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get the team victory, but Kyle and Andreas played really well. Kyle was able to win and defend his title, and he actually had to birdie his last hole to beat Andreas by one.”
For Baylor junior Kyle Jones, it was a repeat success. Jones shot an even-par 213 over 54 holes in the three rounds to win the individual title. This marks the second straight Oak Hills title for Jones, who won the previous year. Heading into the final round, Jones was tied for the lead at 2-under-par. A score of 2-over-par 73, including two birdies on the back nine, was all that was needed for him to clinch the individual championship. His 10 birdies were the third-most by any player in the field.
Sophomore Andreas Gjesteby finished one stroke behind Jones at 3-over-par. Starting at 13th place, Gjesteby shot 4-under-par 67 in the final round, the lowest of anybody on the field, to finish in second place. Gjesteby had six birdies in the round to help move him up 11 spots.
By the tourney’s end, five of Baylor’s six representatives finished in the top-15 individually. Redshirt senior Jerry Ruiz, sophomore Niclas Mansson, and junior Filippo Zucchetti each finished tied for 15th, shooting a 10-over-par 223. Junior Mikkel Bjerch-Andresen completed his tournament tied for 53rd with a 19-over-par 232.
The Bears will play next at the Bayou City Championship in Humble from Feb. 21-23.