The #3-ranked Dalton State Roadrunners claimed their third consecutive SSAC championship on Wednesday in the final round of the Southern States Athletic Conference Championships held at the Par-71, 6,764-yard Arrowhead Country Club in Montgomery, AL. The Roadrunners finished with a team total (-23, 829) that gave them a 32-shot win over 2nd place Coastal Georgia. Dalton State also set a new 54-hole school scoring record in the victory.
The Roadrunners saved their best for last, firing an (-11, 273) to record the best score for the entire tournament. S.M. Lee continued to dominate the course, firing (-3, 68) towards a tournament total (-7, 206) and claiming his fourth individual medalist honor on the season.. He opened with two consecutive birdies on holes 2 and 3 to go out in 34. The back proved no trouble for Lee as he posted par at 10-14 and birdie on 15 towards a (-2, 34) on the back.
P.J. Shields posted a solid third round (+2, 73) towards a tournament total of (-5, 208) and claimed 2nd. Shields opened with a bogey on #1, but posted back-to-back birdies on 4 and 5 to go out in 36. The back would give him some trouble as he posted a double bogey on 12, but Shields would find his rhythm and post par on 13-16. Shields would get within one of Lee after a birdie at 17, but closed out with a bogey at 18.
Chase Cole had an excellent third round (-4, 67) towards a tournament total of (-4, 209). Cole moved up three spot to claim 3rd. Cole posted birdie on 5 to go out in 35. The back gave him no trouble as Cole posted birdies on 10, 13, and 15 to finish with his best 9 in the tournament coming in with a (-3, 32) on the back.
Ben Rebne carded a third round (E, 71) towards a tournament total of (-1, 212) and finished tied for 5th. Rebne started with bogey on #1, but posted par on 2-9 to go out in 37. He had a rough start on the back with bogies on 10 and 12, but finished in style with consecutive birdies on 16 and 17 for a (-1, 34) on his final nine.
Dalton Johnson shot (-4, 67) to round out the scoring for the Roadrunners. Johnson opened with a bogey, but found his stride with three straight birdies on 5-7 to go out in 35. Johnson would continue strong to finish with back-to-back birdies on 17-18 for (-3, 32) on the back.
"It's pretty incredible to have almost a brand new team and for them to have accomplished what they have done this year." said DS men's coach Ben Rickett. "Winning a conference championship is always one of the goals at the beginning of the year on the way to getting ready for the national championship." He continued "These scores this week can be deceptive as there are some strong teams in our conference but they took care of business early in the tournament and never let up."