GREENSBORO, N.C. - The LaGrange golf team made history with a final round charge at the NCAA Division III Championship on Friday at the Grandover Golf Resort East Course.
The Panthers completed their finest performance in the NCAA tournament by finishing in a three-way tie with Berry and Transylvania for eighth. The team bettered the old mark of 18th set by the 2009 squad.
The Panthers shot a team score of 304, one of the five best team scores for the final round. They had a tournament total score of 1,207.
"We played solid for the tournament, with the rain on Thursday being the only thing that held us back," Head Coach Lee Richter said. "We came here to win a championship and I thought our players gave it their all."
The Panthers reached the top 10 with the youngest of the 15 remaining teams in the tournament, playing three freshmen, one junior and one senior.
Leading the Panthers' charge was one of those freshmen, Osborn Theam. Theam shot a final round 73 to finish tied for seventh. With the finish, Theam earned PING Division III All-American status.
Theam is the first Panther freshman since Bo Tiller in 2007 to be an All-American. It marks the fifth straight year the Panthers have had an All-American.
Theam was four-over on his round when he came to the 13th hole of his round, the par-4 no. 4. He holed out from the fairway with his second shot, a 143-yard nine iron, for an eagle. He added a birdie on the eighth hole to finish 1-over for the day.
Junior Cory Howard followed Theam with a three-over 75 to tie for 20th. Howard moved up nine places in the standings Friday.
The Panthers' lone senior, Freddie Wolford, played his final collegiate round. Wolford completed his career with an 82, which included a birdie on the par-3 12th hole.
The Panthers had a memorable 2013-14 season. It started with winning the Oglethorpe Fall Invitational, followed by taking the USA South Tournament championship and ending with the record finish at the NCAA tournament.