Huge rally by Gophers leads to first-place finish

Minnesota’s men’s golf team completed a 13-stroke final-round comeback to win the Big Ten/Pac-10 Challenge on Tuesday in Brandon Dunes, Ore.

After a first-round 304, the Gophers fired a 292 in the second round of the tournament to tie Southern California for first place with a 20-over 596.

Minnesota was named the tournament champion because of the fifth score tiebreaker – in which Gophers junior Ryan Paulson’s 154 trumped the Trojans’ Ben Hayes by four shots.

“This is one of the best comebacks we’ve had,” coach Brad James said. “Today was a great team effort. Everyone on our team was right around the other guys.”

The tournament was marred by poor weather both days.

It was supposed to be a three-round tournament, but the Gophers had to quit the second round after seven holes Monday.

On Tuesday, the second round became the final as Minnesota battled through the remainder of the round under similar conditions.

Bronson La’Cassie’s final-round 71 put him in a tie for fourth place on the weekend.

James said, “It’s important to get a win in the fall to know that you belong.”