Tuesday was the conclusion of Temple’s 2015-16 season as well as the career of senior Brandon Matthews.
The Owls placed eighth in the nine-team field in Lecanto, Florida at the American Athletic Conference Championship. Temple finished with a three-day score of 901, 56 strokes behind champion South Florida.
“I was disappointed,” Coach Brian Quinn said. “I think these kids just put a little too much heat on themselves.”
Quinn said his expectation were tempered this season with a total of nine underclassmen on the roster.
“I was a little bummed out with our result, I think we certainly could have played a little bit better,” Quinn said. But overall I’m encouraged with the year. I think these kids have gotten a lot better.”
On the individual leaderboard, Matthews led the way, finishing fifth with three-under par at the championship.
“He’s the greatest player in the history of Temple golf in my opinion,” Quinn said. “It was a privilege to watch him play. From his freshman year to now, he’s come a long way. He’s a seasoned player and he’s a true professional.”
He was followed by sophomore Mark Farley, who placed 26th at nine-over par for the event. Freshman Gary McCabe finished in a tie for 36th place, carding a 16-over 232. Redshirt freshman John Barone was next with a three-round total of 234 which tied him for 40th place while Trey Wren rounded out the field for the Owls in a 43rd place tie at 23-over par.
While it wasn’t the scorecard Temple was looking for, Matthews left pleased with his final performance of his collegiate career even.
“I had the opportunity to win this golf tournament this week,” Matthews said. “I put myself in the position that I needed to be in. I just didn’t get it done on the greens.”
The senior leaves Temple having tied the program record for wins with eight in his four seasons as an Owl.
“I can’t even describe how much Temple University has done for me,” Matthews said. “The list is so long that I can’t even sit here and begin to tell you. I can’t be more thankful of what the last four years have given me.”
“I’m really thankful,” Farley said of his time with Matthews. “I feel blessed to have spent the last two years with him. He’s probably the best player I’ll ever have the privilege of competing with. It was great to be his teammate and he was a great teammate to us. I wish him the best in the future. He was a hard worker and I’m just going to use what he taught us to pass along to the younger guys. He’s done a lot for Temple golf as a whole.”
Greg Frank can be reached at Greg.Frank@temple.edu or on Twitter @g_frank6.