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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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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Wacky week ends in wins for Erickson, No. 14 men’s golf

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Photo by Photo by Jesse Everett

Senior Dan Erickson opened his senior season with a second place finish at the Blessings Collegiate Invitational.

Senior Dan Erickson and the No. 14 Texas A&M men’s golf team swept the individual and team titles Tuesday in the first spring semester action at the Border Olympics.
Erickson pulled some magic out of his bag at a crucial moment on the way to his second career tournament win. After a nice drive followed by a clutch 266-yard 3-wood to within six feet, Erickson drained the putt for eagle and forced a playoff against Texas’ Hunter Ostrom.
In final-round action, Erickson had been 3-over for the day and even par for the tournament with four holes remaining. He birdied two of the next three to put him down two shots at the final tee box. He went on to clinch the win on the second playoff hole with a par.
“We’ve put in a lot of work over the winter break, and it feels great to start the spring with a win,” Erickson said.
The new reality of expecting the unexpected hit the Aggies when the season opener at the All American Intercollegiate in Houston was canceled due to icy conditions. That opened the door for the Aggies to return to Laredo for the first time since 2004 where the team has a long history of success at the Border Olympics.
In the first action since November when the team finished tied for eighth, the Aggies were ready to be back on the course.
“It’s been tough in terms of preparation,” A&M coach Brian Kortan told 12thman.com. “The guys have been out of their routine, and then they’re thrown into a tournament that we scheduled a week ago.”
The only team under par in the tournament at 2-under, the Aggies proved they meant all business beating No. 10 Texas and No. 21 Baylor by eight strokes.
The final round was a classic Lone Star battle between Texas and A&M. The Aggies fired a 3-under par first round and held a three-stroke lead after the second. The Aggies continued to hold the lead until they took advantage of the par 5, 17th. Erickson and senior Brandon Smith birdied the hole while freshman Daniel Rodrigues eagled the hole, extending their lead beyond the Longhorns’ reach.
It is the fifth time the Aggies have won the team title in Laredo with the last time being in 2003. It is also the second straight year the Aggies have opened their spring season with a victory, with last year’s win coming at the Sea Best Invitational in Jacksonville, Fla.
“It was very important for the guys to gain some confidence after the ups and downs and uncertainty of the fall season,” Kortan told 12thman.com. “I’m so proud of the way they battled and were able to bring a trophy back to Aggieland.”
Erickson is now the seventh Aggie to win the individual crown at the Border Olympics and first to win the individual title since 1998. Texas A&M Hall of Famer and four-time PGA Tour winner Ryan Palmer last won the title in Laredo.
Joining Erickson in the top 10 were junior Sam Bennett who finished tied for fifth at 2-under and senior Walker Lee who finished tied for ninth at even par. Rodrigues finished tied for 25th, shooting four-under in his final round. Smith finished the tournament tied for 43rd.
Erickson said it’s exciting to start the spring with wins both as a team and individually.
“The main reason I came back is because our roster is so stacked and we all believed we had unfinished business from 2020,” Erickson told 12thman.com.

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