AUSTIN – Blake Elliott’s season came to a heartbreaking end here on Wednesday when he scored a bogey on the 18th hole and missed out on advancing to the NCAA Championships by one stroke.
Elliott finished the 54-hole NCAA Men’s Golf Austin Regional Tournament tied for eighth place on the individual leaderboard at 2-under par after rounds of 71-70-70.
He needed to be the top individual golfer that wasn’t a member of any of the top five teams – Texas, TCU, Clemson, Pepperdine, Southern California – to qualify for next week’s national championship tournament and becoming the first Cowboy golfer to do so since the 1977 Cowboy team.
Elliott began the day with three birdies in the first five holes, but a double bogey on No. 3 kept him at -2 for the tournament. A birdie on No. 9 made him -3 at the turn but lost a stroke with a bogey on the 13th hole.
He got back into contention with a birdie on the next hole to get to 3-under, a number he needed to hit since Julian Perico of Arkansas was already in the clubhouse with the same score.
Elliott fired off pars on Nos. 15, 16 and 17 and went into the final hole needing a birdie to advance or a par to force a playoff with Perico. Instead, he shot a five and ended the tournament with a 2-under par, one stroke away from advancing.
Texas won the regional in runaway fashion at 25-under par. TCU finished second at -5 then Clemson (-1), Pepperdine (+6), and Southern California (+8) rounded out the top five teams that will advance to the national championships.
Elliott ended his McNeese career ranked No. 21 in the nation and will go down as one of the most successful Cowboy golfers in school history.