The SEC Individual Champion, sent the Florida men’s golf team to the SEC Championship Finals with his victory on the playoff hole on Saturday evening. He teed off the 18th 1-down and won the hole to force extras. DuBois nearly eagled the hole (565 yards, par 5) as he two putted from seven feet for another memorable moment.
Florida advances to the championship match for the first time in program history since the match play format was added in 2017.
A battle all day along with the Aggies, both sides traded leads throughout Sea Island Golf Club as the biggest lead by any golfer was two holes.
Fred Biondi gave UF its’ first point for a 1-0 advantage with a 4&3 victory. He erased a 1-hole deficit at the turn and tied it up at 10 and then raddled off four straight wins and his par on 15 secured the 1-up over A&M.
The Orange and Blue moved ahead 2-0 with a 2&1 win from Yuxin Lin over No. 1 ranked Sam Bennett. Lin’s birdie on 11 tied the match and on the next hole a long putt downhill jumped him 1-up through 12. The junior moved to 2-0 in the match play portion as he won his first match in the quarterfinals 5&3.
Texas A&M added to the drama of the outing as they won a point when Phichaksn Maichon edged Tyler Wilkes 1-up. The sophomore fought all day long and tied it with wins on four and five.
Ricky Castillo and Daniel Rodrigues went back and forth, as they tied 12 holes. The biggest lead both had on one another was 1-up. They tied 18 and were headed to extra holes, but DuBois’ winning putt halted them.
Florida will face No. 1 Vanderbilt tomorrow at 8 am ET live on SEC Network and aim to win its 16 SEC Title and first since 2011.
Head Coach JC Deacon
We John DuBois play so far…
“It has been rewarding. He is such a great young man and does everything right. Both on and off the golf course. To see him win the individual title, play so great this morning and get a point for us and then wins the 18 hole and playoff to clinch the match today, is just such a special week for him. There is definitely something special happening with him and this team. Its really exciting to be apart of it.”
On the team working to get to this point..
“That’s why all these guys came to the University of Florida. To have a chance and opportunity like they do tomorrow morning. We got to go play our best golf tomorrow. We are playing a phenomenal Vanderbilt team and (Head Coach) Scott Limbaugh does a fantastic job. Seems like they are in this position every year. We are going to have to be really sharp tomorrow, but I know we are prepared. Coach Dudley Hart has done such an awesome job getting these guys ready and its going to be exciting tomorrow. We are going to give it our best shot.”
On the team coming up this morning and supporting all day…
“Obviously incredible to win those two matches today, but when we came around the 15th hole this morning and those guys are there, we didn’t ask them to be here. They did that on their own and that tells you everything about our culture . Our guys are brothers. They are really tight and do everything together. They are there for each other through good times and bad. There is bunch of those guys that would like to be playing in these matches. They put the Florida gators ahead of themselves and came out here to support their teammates. That’s really special to me and I love being a part of that.”
On the mindset day after the win yesterday…
“Coming into today after yesterday that was a really cool experience being able to win the SEC Individual title, but we knew had a job to do. As a team we still had three rounds to go before we were SEC team champions. That’s our ultimate goal. That’s what we have been striving for and working for these past couple months. Coming into today we knew we had to stick to that, our goals, our plan and process in order to be able to achieve that goal. Today was a really cool day. A long day but at the end successful. We get to stay one more night and go at it tomorrow.”
On quick turnaround in between matches…
“Its like, alright I got to go back out. I took a quick shower to get ready for it and reset. Get ready back for the round. Going into that match with Texas A&M realizing its a new round and just got to be mentally prepared for it.”
We have these past two days hit you yet…
“It hit me there (the winning put). Having all the guys there and drive up from Gainesville today and watch us the whole day is pretty special. Getting to celebrate with them and going to the finals its a special thing to celebrate with this team.”