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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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A&M men’s golf, Sam Bennett take titles at Aggie Invitational

Courtesy of Hayden Caroll, Aggieland Yearbook
Men’s Golf Aggie Invitational 2021

The No. 11 Texas A&M men’s golf team swept the individual and team titles at the Aggie Invitational at Traditions Club, with the Aggies beating top-ranked Oklahoma in a playoff. Sam Bennett beat the field at 6-under par for the tournament.
The Aggies came roaring back on the final day to force a playoff with the Sooners to win the Aggie Invitational for the first time since 2014. Coming into the day down seven strokes to Texas and four strokes to Oklahoma, A&M coach Brian Kortan said it was going to take a big effort to win the golf tournament. That big effort was delivered up and down the Aggies’ lineup, with senior Dan Erickson leading the charge for the Aggies with a final round 68 (-4).
After gaining the lead and losing it within the second round, Erickson said it was not how he or his team wanted to close out Day 2, but he knew they were still in contention going into Sunday.
“We just needed to play our game,” Erickson said. “I was able to do that pretty well. I stuck to the game plan, rolled a few putts in and was able to keep it together down the stretch, along with all of us, to finish strong and then win in a playoff.”
The Aggies’ showdown against former Big 12 foes went down to the wire. Texas’s wheels fell off late to end the tournament at 4-over par and two strokes behind Oklahoma and A&M.
In the playoff, A&M’s execution and experience helped the Aggies close out the Sooners with three pars and a bogey. Oklahoma hit four bogeys on the replayed 18th hole.
The win marks the fourth time A&M has won their home golf tournament. After not having played the Aggie Invitational for two years, and then coming from behind for a victory meant a lot, said Kortan. The win is both experience and momentum going forward.
“Beating Texas and Oklahoma and playing with those guys three days in a row is a great experience for our guys,” Kortan said. “These are the type of events that you can draw experience from during the postseason.”
Junior Sam Bennett claimed the individual title for the second straight tournament for his third win of 2021. Bennett is the fourth Aggie to win medalist honors at the Aggie Invitational.
Bennett came out hot, shooting a 4-under first round and started the first six holes of his second round 5-under par to put him at 9-under. He would retain the lead until the finish, holding off ninth-ranked Longhorn Pierceson Coody by one stroke. The Madisonville product has been playing at Traditions since he was 13, and Bennett said he was confident coming into this tournament.
“I’ve been in good form coming into the week,” Bennett said. “I was texting my brother and was like, ‘Ain’t no one gonna beat me on my home course.’ It felt good to get the job done and the win for the Ags as well.”
The win was sweet for Bennett with friends and family in Madisonville and College Station supporting him, he said, both this weekend and throughout his entire journey.
“It was cool having them out there watching me play and all the Aggies that came out,” Bennett said. “The 12th Man was huge for us, and it was nice getting some claps and hearing some roars out there.”
The Aggies will carry this win into the SEC Championships at Sea Island Golf Club in Saint Simons Island, Ga., April 21-25.

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