Oct. 23, 2012
COLTS NECK, N.J. – Anthony Kim won the individual championship and Army shared the team title with Air Force, Tuesday as play concluded at the Service Academy Classic.
Army and Air Force shot identical scores in all three rounds and were declared co-championships of the 54-hole event at Trump National. Navy, the leader after 36 holes, was third, eight strokes back.
The Black Knight’s finished first in the Service Academy Classic for the first time since winning the event in 1994 when it was played in Dallas, Texas. Army had placed second or third before ending an 18-year brought in the matchup with its service academy rivals.
“I’m happy with the way we finished,” said third-year Army coach Brian Watts. “The guys battled hard today and it was good to see. We struggled again on the greens and got sloppy in our second round when we lost some focus. We were able to bounce back today and put together a good round.”
Kim, tied for the lead after 36 holes, claimed medalist honors with a two-under-par 70. It is Kim’s third career victory and the second time he has won the Service Academy Classic.
The junior from Los Angeles, Calif., had academic obligations on Sunday and only played the back nine of the practice round. He drove the first nine holes in a cart but didn’t actually play those first holes until the tournament got underway Monday.
“Anthony hit the ball great,” said Watts. “He had a great ball-striking day and was solid all tournament.”
Kim trailed by as many as four shots on Tuesday before rallying for the victory.
“I hit the ball pretty well,” said Kim who won the Service Academy Classic on Oct. 5, 2010 and the Rhody Invitational on April 22, 2011. “I hit most of the fairways and when I missed, I hit it in the right spots.”
Army shot a 290 on Tuesday in the final round and an 893 for the championship.
Kim wasn’t the only Black Knight to break par. Eric Peng fired a one-under-par 71 to finish eighth at 226. John Lee shot a 74 and was seventh at 225.
Marcus Plunkett shot his best round of the tournament with a 75 and finished ninth at 228. Matt Philie shot a 77 and was tied for 12th at 230 while Brandon Baerrwaldt was 24th with a 242 following a 79.
Harrison Florence was the top finisher among the three individuals with a 233 and tied for 16th after a 79. Brandon Roberts scored a 75 and was 23rd with a 240 and Robby Hill was 26th after an 80 and a 246 for the championship.
“The team stayed patient,” said Watts. “And battled. It was a great team effort. The guys never got caught up in what everyone else was doing. The focus was there and the energy was good. It was great conditions today. There was no wind and the hole locations were fair. We figured we were going to have to shoot under-par to win but you never know what anyone else will shoot.”
Army will conclude its fall season Nov. 3 and 4 at the Hummingbird Intercollegiate in Sapphire, N.C.
Service Academy Classic
T1. Army, 299-304-290—893
T1. Air Force, 299-304-290—893
3. Navy, 303-294-304--901
1. Anthony Kim, 72-75-70—217
7. John Lee, 73-78-74—225
8. Eric Peng, 78-77-71—226
9. Marcus Plunkett, 77-76-75—228
T12. Matt Philie, 77-76-77—230
24. Brandon Baerwaldt, 86-77-79--242
T16. Harrison Florence, 75-79-79--233
23. Brandon Roberts, 84-81-75—240
26. Robby Hill, 88-78-80--246