Nine AJGA alumni represented top-seeded Oklahoma State and sixth-seeded Alabama in the 2018 NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championship.
In the championship match, Oklahoma State swept Alabama 5-0 on the way to claiming their 11th national championship. This is the Cowboys’ first title since the tournament switched to match play in 2009, and they were also the first No. 1 seed to win the tournament under the new format.
AJGA alum Matthew Wolff clinched the Division I Men’s Golf Championship for the Cowboys by defeating Alabama’s Davis Riley 4-and-3. Wolff was dominant from the beginning of the championship round, as he holed an eagle on No. 1 to take an early lead. From there, the freshman never looked back and only lost one hole en route to the victory.
Wolff, a 2015 first-team Rolex Junior All-American, is familiar with Karsten Creek. As an AJGA member, he earned two top-10 finishes at The PING Invitational, including a T3 in 2015.
Like Wolff, several other AJGA alumni in the championship field also have experience playing at Karsten Creek. In 2015, Oklahoma State freshman Austin Eckroat tied for third with his future teammate at The PING Invitational. Alabama teammates and former AJGA members Davis Shore and Jonathan Hardee also competed in The PING Invitational at Karsten Creek. Hardee, a Rolex Junior All-American, earned two top-20 finishes in 2012 and 2013, and Shore, a two-time Rolex Junior All-American, finished T6 in 2016.
Of the 20 players who competed in the national semifinal round, 19 were AJGA alumnae. Alabama, Auburn and Duke’s rosters were comprised entirely of former AJGA members, while Oklahoma State’s roster contained four former AJGA members.
In the national semifinal, Alabama cruised to a 5-0 victory over Duke, while Oklahoma State squeaked past Auburn with a 3-2 victory.