Men’s golf team collapses in CCAA Championship


The Chico State men’s golf team celebrates after the Cal State San Marcos Invitational. Photo credit: T.L. Brown

It’s been over a month since the Chico State men’s golf team has placed lower than first in a tournament, but on Wednesday, April 20, they were brought down to earth as they fell to Sonoma State in a 3-2 decision at the Silverado Resort and Spa in Napa.

Despite destroying the competition on Monday in stroke play when they won by 13 shots, they couldn’t pull out all the victories needed to win medal/match play.

It was a strong playoffs for senior Justin Wiles who shot a 5-under par and scored a 139 on Monday. Wiles lost in a playoff for medalist honors.

Seniors Alistair Docherty and Lee Gearhart both tied for third on Monday, April 18 shooting a 2-under par and scored a 142.

On Tuesday, April 19, Wiles picked up right where he left off as he shot a bogey-free round and won his match.

Fellow senior Alistair Docherty looked as if he might lose when he was down a stroke but came right back and ended up winning by a stroke to keep the Wildcats’ hopes alive.

Chico State’s Lee Gearhart tried to rally, birdying his final three holes to finish at 1-under par, but it wasn’t enough. Sonoma State’s Brandon Lee ended up birdying on 18, basically killing the Wildcats’ hopes of a win.

Rounding out the day for Chico State, sophomore Colby Dean and first-year Matt Hutchins both got beat, as Dean lost by seven shots and Hutchins was defeated by five.

Chico State continues to shoot for the NCAA Championship finals as they will be the No. 1 seed in the West/South Central Regional Championship May 2-4 at the University of New Mexico Golf Course in Las Cruces. They must finish in the top five to reach their goal of an NCAA Championship finals birth.

Jason Spies can be reached at [email protected] or @Jason_Spies on Twitter.