May 17, 2014
Raleigh, N.C. - Western Carolina junior J.T. Poston wrapped up perhaps the best individual single-season in program history on Saturday afternoon, charting three birdies in a three-over par round of 74 as he concluded play at the 2014 NCAA Men's Golf Raleigh Regional at the par-71, 7,213-yard Lonnie Poole Golf Course. Poston advanced four spots on the last day of tournament play to place 38th in the final standings with a three-round score of 220.
Poston matched the finish of his first-ever NCAA post-season appearance, also finishing tied for 38th a season ago in the 2013 Tallahassee regional with a three-day score of 219 (71-72-76). It is tied for the third-best individual NCAA showing in the WCU program history as Matt Cook finished 20th in 2007 and holds the all-time best finish with a 14th-place tie in 2008.
Opening his final round in a tie for 42nd and on the back nine, Poston got off to a tough start with two bogies and a double-bogey through his first five holes to stand at four-over par. He bounced back by birdying the par-5 15th for the second time in three days, but again found bogey on the par-4 18th for the third-straight day to make the turn at four-over par.
Poston carded a fourth bogey on the par-3 second to drop to five-over par through 11 holes. The Hickory, N.C., product finished strong, though, tallying two birdies and five pars over his final seven holes to finish one-under on the front nine and three-over on the afternoon.
Georgia Tech claimed the regional team championship handily by 17 strokes over second-place, Washington. The Yellow Jackets posted a team score of 825 while the Huskies were the runner-up at 842. Texas A&M (849) finished third, seven-strokes in arrears of the runner-up with Kentucky (856) and Florida State (860) rounding out the top five - each advancing to the NCAA National Championship event.
Washington's Jonathan Sanders claimed individual medalist with a three-round score of 10-under par, 203, to edge Georgia Tech's Ollie Schniederjans (206) by three strokes. Wake Forest's Cyrus Stewart was the highest finishing individual not on one of the top five teams, finishing tied for fifth overall with a three-day score of 209 to advance to the championship round.
On the season, Poston recorded nine top 10 finishes including placing in the top five eight times with three individual medalist honors in his 11 seasonal events. The Southern Conference's Player of the Year and an All-SoCon selection, Poston recorded WCU's all-time best single-season scoring average at 70.27 and will enter his senior year atop the career stroke average chart at 71.97.
The three-year starter was listed on two national player of the year watch lists this season - both the Ben Hogan and the Haskins Award - while also appearing on the Palmer Cup watch list this spring.