For Kentucky, it was the first SEC men's golf championship in school history. "We had by far the best round of the tournament on Sunday, except for Kentucky, which had a fabulous day with its 283 to win. Kentucky played great and we congratulate them."
The golf course was the big winner over three days of competition with Kentucky's winning total being 35 over par in windy conditions along the Atlantic coast. Kentucky made its charge on the final day with a 283 total, three over par, while Auburn shot a 286 on Sunday after opening with a 296 on Friday and shooting a 295 on Sunday at the par 70, 7,005 Seaside Course.
Senior Tyler McKeever led Auburn's third day effort, shooting a 68, seven strokes better than each of his first two rounds. McKeever was AU's top overall finisher at eight-over-par, which put him in 10th place, eight strokes off the pace of 210 shot by David Skinns of Tennessee. Richard Scott of Georgia was second at 911. McKeever and Skinns, with their 68s, posted the low scores on Sunday.
Griffin notes that he talked to McKeever during dinner on Saturday night and told the senior that if the Tigers could post one or two low rounds on Sunday, something they had not done in cool and windy conditions the first two days, they could win the event.
"Tyler came through with a 68 and that was almost enough for us to win the championship," Griffin said.
Georgia finished third as a team at 883, five shots ahead of Florida. The Gators went into the final round with a one shot lead over Auburn. Tennessee finished at 889 while LSU and South Carolina tied for sixth at 899.
Auburn junior Stuart Moore, who shot a 72 on Sunday, finished at 219, one shot behind McKeever in a tie for seventh place.
Senior Lee Williams finished in a tie for 12th at 221 following a 73 on Sunday.
Matthew Myers, a senior for the Tigers, closed with a 77 and finished the tournament in 17th place with a 13-over-par 223.
Senior Will Claxton shot a 73 on Sunday to finish at 226, which tied him for 26th in the individual competition. Claxton helped the Tigers make a strong run with a hole-in-one on 17, a par three 192-yarder.
Coach Mike Griffin
Griffin said he liked his team's effort. "They battled and battled and had an outstanding round. You have to tip your hat to Kentucky. They just played a little bit better than we did. We had a total team effort each day with each one of them in contention. It was a lot of fun to watch coming down the stretch."
Griffin's Tigers are off until playing May 14-15th at the Perry Maxwell tournament in Ardmore, Okla. The NCAA Regionals will be played May 19-20 a The Golf Club of Tennessee outside of Nashville, Tenn.