It was a wild weekend at Riverton Pointe Golf and Country Club in South Carolina, but at the end of three rounds of golf, YOUR Marquette Golden Eagles are the 2023 Big East Men’s Golf Champions! MU was led for the tournament by Bhoom Sima-Aree, who shot a three under par 213 to end the weekend as co-medalist with Jack Simon from St. John’s. Simon defeated Sima-Aree to earn the individual automatic bid to the NCAA regionals, while Marquette claims the league’s team berth in the national championship field. It is Marquette’s fifth Big East team championship and fourth in the last eight tournaments. Sima-Aree is Marquette’s sixth individual Big East champion and fifth in the last eight tournaments.
After the first day of competition, Marquette was sitting in fourth place, but it was a highly competitive fourth place. At five over par as a team, the Golden Eagles were seven strokes off the lead, as Seton Hall was -2 after 18 holes. The entire 10 team field — Providence doesn’t sponsor men’s golf — was within 12 strokes of the leader, as both DePaul and Xavier were at +10 at the end of Day #1. Marquette was led by Nicolas Evangelio and Max Lyons through the first round with both men shooting even par 72.
On Day #2, Marquette ran wild on the front nine, recording 13 birdies between the five players against just four bogeys. Evangelio knocked in an eagle on #15, but that wasn’t the highlight as Tyler Leach tied the course record at 66 for the day to lead MU. That outing, combined with a -4 day from Sima-Aree pushed the Golden Eagles out in front as they went -9 as a team after sitting as many as 12 under par at one point during the round. Marquette was -4 as a team after Day 2, one stroke ahead of Seton Hall and two ahead of St. John’s. Sima-Aree’s day moved him to -3 for the tournament, four strokes behind Jack Simon from St. John’s, who was the individual leader at -7 through two rounds.
The Big East had a new fun twist to the tournament for the third and final round: Winds gusting up to 50 miles an hour during play. That’s how the best team score of the final round was a +9 from Georgetown. Marquette did not have the fantastic front nine that they had on Saturday, but they had a good enough front nine, including a -1 from Sima-Aree thanks to an eagle on #2. However, the Golden Eagles went from up as many as six strokes at one point during the day to trailing the leader by six strokes as a team before getting it together down the stretch. That stretch run included an eagle on 15 by Josh Robinson and back-to-back birdies by Tyler Leach on 14 and 15. At the end, it was Sima-Aree coming up 18 with Marquette holding a four stroke lead over St. John’s, and he went for par on the final hole to clinch the title for the Golden Eagles.
Marquette will wait for the NCAA selection show on May 3rd to find out where they’ll be headed from here. There are six regional sites, and the top five teams from each site will advance to the finals. The selection show will be broadcast on the Golf Channel at Noon Central, on Wednesday, May 3rd.