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Nov. 2, 2010

By Wes Todd
Assistant Media Relations Director

KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. – South Carolina sophomore golfer Dean Hester earned the best varsity finish of his collegiate career as he took seventh place at the Kiawah Intercollegiate, which wrapped up on Tuesday. As a team, South Carolina posted its best round of the week – a 15-over-par 303 – to move up one spot and finish in seventh place at 928 (+64) in the 54-hole event at Turtle Point Golf Club as the Gamecocks wrapped up their fall season.

Hester, a native of Dublin, Ga., was the Gamecocks’ top finisher for the week, playing in the tournament as an individual. He shot rounds of 70-75-75=220 (+4) to finish four shots out of the lead and in seventh place overall. He started out with a birdie at No. 15, then turned for the front nine at 1-over after bogeys at 17 and 18. But he was error-free over the next 10 holes, carding birdies at the sixth and 10th to get to 1-under for the day. After dropping to even par with bogey at No. 17, he was one shot out of the lead with one hole to play, but made a triple-bogey on the par-3 14th to finish the day at 3-over and the week at 4-over. Nevertheless, it was the best finish in five career varsity tournament appearances for Hester, whose previous best was a tie for 26th place at the 2010 Seminole Intercollegiate in March.

Freshman Blaine Woodruff, for the fourth time in four events, led the Gamecock team effort with a final-round 74, giving him a week of 71-81-74=226 (+10) to move up to 14th place for the tournament, his second top-20 finish of the season. Woodruff, a native of Acworth, Ga., started off with a bogey on No. 8, but then got to 1-under with birdies on holes 11 and 13. He would finish the back nine at 1-over after bogeys at the 16th and 18th, then got one more bogey at No. 3 to finish 2-over for the day.

Sophomore Dykes Harbin improved by eight shots from his first round to his third round this week, posting a 75 (+3) on Tuesday to finish the week at 235 (+19) and tied for 39th place. Freshman Logan Harrell went 78-77-78=233 (+17) for the week and tied for 32nd. The team’s third freshman, Caulder Moore, dropped to a tie for 22nd place after a final-round 83; like Hester, Moore played this week as an individual and his score did not count toward the team total. Sophomore Michael Raines tied for 57th place at 244 (+28), and junior Wesley Bryan was much improved in his third round with a 76 (+4) to finish the week and the fall season on a strong note.

Indiana was the wire-to-wire tournament winner, shooting 877 (+13) to defeat Campbell by 14 shots. College of Charleston was third at 907 (+43). Longwood’s Michael Young was the tournament medalist at even-par 216, followed by Indiana’s David Mills and Campbell’s Matt Moot at 218 (+2).

With the fall season complete, the Gamecocks will turn their attention to conditioning, training and various individual events for the bulk of the next four months. The spring season kicks off Feb. 27-28, 2011, with the Seahawk Invitational, which will be played at the Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C.

*7. Dean Hester – 70-75-75=220 (+4)
14. Blaine Woodruff – 71-81-74=226 (+10)
*T22. Caulder Moore – 74-73-83=230 (+14)
T32. Logan Harrell – 78-77-78=233 (+17)
T39. Dykes Harbin – 83-77-75=235 (+19)
T57. Michael Raines – 86-79-79=244 (+28)
74. Wesley Bryan – 79-101-76=256 (+40)
*Played as individuals; score does not count toward team total

1. Indiana – 877 (+13)
2. Campbell – 891 (+27)
3. College of Charleston – 907 (+43)
4. Longwood – 912 (+48)
5. Towson – 922 (+58)
6. Charleston Southern – 924 (+60)
7. South Carolina – 928 (+64)
8. George Washington – 935 (+71)
9. Presbyterian – 937 (+73)
10. Stetson – 947 (+83)
11. Western Kentucky – 954 (+90)
12. Butler – 957 (+93)
13. Western Illinois – 968 (+104)
14. Bethune-Cookman – 978 (+114)