• • •
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – It’s hard to believe Bobby Wyatt has never won a college golf tournament, with the amount of accolades he has received over the last three years.
There have been a few close calls throughout his career at Alabama, but he just couldn’t get over that hump.
On Sunday, the senior collected that elusive victory at the SEC Championship after playing lights out over the last three days. He finished with rounds of 65-61-66 at Sea Island’s Seaside course for an 18-under 192 total.
“Just a little disappointed it took this long, but I’m certainly excited about the win,” Wyatt said. “Moreso, it’s just awesome to win an SEC Championship as a team. It’s huge for us. That’s our second biggest goal beside an NCAA Championship, so to get this done it’s something we’re certainly excited about and proud of.”
Not only did he blitz the field by seven shots, but Wyatt finished bogey-free at the par-70, 7,005-yard course. His 9-under 61 in the second round was a school-record. Over the last 76 holes, dating to the final round of the Mason Rudolph Championship in Franklin, Tenn., Wyatt has made 25 birdies.
“I would imagine any time you’re not making bogeys it’s a sign you’re doing something right, so I would say this is some of the best golf I’ve ever played,” Wyatt said.
Alabama head coach Jay Seawell concurred, adding: “That’s crazy good. Amazing golf.”
The Crimson Tide, No. 1 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings, also won the team title in Georgia for an SEC three-peat.
Alabama shot 272-266-268 for a 34-under 806 total, 16 shots ahead of runner-up LSU. It’s the Tide’s fifth SEC title.
“When they (seniors Wyatt, Cory Whitsett and Trey Mullinax) came (to Alabama) they said we were going to change it. We’re going to get rings,” Seawell said. “We only had two SECs before they got here, and they are leaving with three themselves.”
Freshman Robby Shelton finished in solo third at 10-under 200. He was bogey-free until he fired his approach shot over the green on his 54th hole.
“We wanted to come out here and show them (the SEC) who we were,” Shelton said. “We have a lot of talent on the team, and we finally put it all together.”
LSU finished second after a 17-under 263 final round. Auburn (829), Georgia (833) and South Carolina (838) rounded out the top 5.
Seawell said the Crimson Tide will regroup after “putting a lot of emphasis on this” for the NCAA regional selections next week as players have final exams starting Monday.
“We’ll give them a few days to decompress,” Seawell said, “and then start that part of the year, which is always exciting.”