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Cal Finishes Fifth At Pac-12’s

Apr 27, 2022
Cal's lineup of Ethan Chung, Sampson Zheng, Tony Chen, Simon Kwon, Charlie Berridge and Aaron Du finished fifth at the 2022 Pac-12 Men's Golf Championships.

SAMMAMISH, Wash. – Cal (361-364-367-354 – 1446, +26) shot the second-best fourth and final round of the Pac-12 Championships on Wednesday and moved up another spot to finish fifth in the 72-hole event hosted by Washington at the par-71, 6979-yard Aldarra Golf Club. Sampson Zheng (71-73-73-69 – 286, +2) and Aaron Du (72-71-70-73 – 286, +2) both finished tied for 10th on the player leaderboard to highlight the Golden Bears' performance, while Tony Chen (75-69-76-67 – 287, +3) had Cal's best round of the day with a four-under par effort that was also the best of his collegiate career and vaulted him 17 spots into a tie for 18th finish.

"I'm really proud of the players and what they showed this week," Cal's Alex and Marie Shipman Director of Men's Golf Walter Chun said. "It was a goal of ours to finish in the top five and to their credit the players accomplished that goal."

Chen played his final 12 holes in five-under par with five birdies and no bogies including a four-under par 32 on the back nine. After being one-over through six holes, he birdied all three of his remaining par-fives (5, 11, 12) as well as the par-four 10th and 18th holes. Chen got through his 18 holes with only 29 putts.

"I think we did a great job to keep our composure by putting together five great scoring rounds of golf for our team," Chen said. "It proves that we have the ability to compete at the highest level."

Zheng's round included four birdies on the par-five seventh, par-three ninth, par-four 14th and par-three 15th. He hit his approach from the trees to within six feet on 14 and made the birdie putt before nearly picking up an ace on 15 before tapping in for his birdie.

"Our team did great today and there are a lot of positives to take away overall," Zheng said. "Everyone stayed patient and grinded out the round. Being able to shoot under par at such a tough course like Aldarra really shows our potential as a team. In the first three rounds, we struggled to put up five good scores, but the last day really gives us lots of momentum going into next season."

Du's two birdies came in back-to-back fashion on the par-five 11th and 12th holes. He also made a 38-footer to save par on the par-three second.

"I'm super proud of my teammates for their resilience and patience," Du said. "As the youngest team in the field, we were able to compete against some of the best teams in the nation. I believe this will only encourage us to work harder."

Ethan Chung (69-78-72-74 – 293, +9), Simon Kwon (76-74-76-71 – 297, +13) and Charlie Berridge (74-77-79-79 – 309, +25) were also in the Cal lineup. Chung finished tied for 35th, Chen tied for 50th and Berridge in sole possession of 67th.

Host Washington (346-360-354-362 – 1422, +2) won the team title by three strokes over second-place Stanford (359-353-357-356 – 1425, +5) at the six-play, five-score event followed by Arizona State (346-364-357-363 – 1430, +10), Oregon (349-368-362-353 – 1432, +12) and Cal. Washington also had the individual medalist in Noah Woolsey (65-71-68-72 – 276) while Stanford's Barclay Brown (68-67-68-74 – 277, -7) finished second after being the 36 and 54-hole leader.

Cal's season as a team has come to an end although individuals may still be selected for the NCAA Regionals.

"It's tough to know that we won't advance to the NCAA Regionals as a team, but the players all showed progress and promise the spring," Chun said. "We'll be back next season, better and hungrier."