Thorbjornsen Leads Stanford Rally From 19 Down in Sweep of Pac-12 Titles

Michael Thorbjornsen of Stanford won the individual title and led the Cardinal back from a 19-stroke deficit to a 13-stroke victory over fourth-ranked Arizona State in the Pacific 12 Conference Men’s Championship at Stanford Golf Course in Palo Alto.

Stanford claimed its 12th conference title and first since 2019.

“I just kept reminding them that it’s six-count-five and that makes a big difference,” Stanford Coach Conrad Ray said of the Cardinal’s 19-strok deficit to Arizona State after the first round. “Just be patient and play good golf.

“I think this is a group that is fueled by confidence. To get this shot in the arm as we start looking toward Regionals and NCAA Championships is great. When these guys are feeling good, they’re really good.

“It’s a culmination of a lot of time and hard work.”

Ray claimed his fifth conference title at Stanford, tying him for the most in program history.

Eighth-ranked Stanford posted a score of 350-341-344-346—1381, 19-under-par, to claim its fourth victory of the season, followed by  Arizona State at 331-345-359-359—1394, while Colorado carded a score of 344-336-353-362—1395 to tie for third with Washington State, which wound up at 344-349-349-353—1395.

Defending champion Washington totaled 343-343-347-364—1397 to tie for fifth with Oregon, which finished at 342-345-351-359—1397, while Arizona was seventh at 352-349-350-363—1414, followed by California at 351-353-351-361—1416.

Oregon State wound up ninth at 351-362-352-358—1423, followed by Southern California at 356-354-358-359—1427, Utah at 361-348-342-381—1432, and UCLA at 366-348-364-370—1448.

Thorbjornsen, a Cardinal junior from Wellesley, Mass., who is the second-ranked men’s amateur in the world, claimed his second victory of the season with a score of 63-66-68-68—265, 15-under-par, followed by Dylan McDermott of Colorado at 66-66-67-68—267, Pono Yanagi of Washington State at 68-66-68-66—268, Javier Barcos of Utah at 69-68-64-71—272 and Nate Stember of Oregon at 67-70-66-70—273.

“It feels really good and we are all on cloud nine right now,” said Thorbjornsen, who won the Western Amateur and Massachusetts Amateur, both in 2021. “Being able to do it in the fashion we did is truly incredible. I think this is really what we needed as a team. We are taking a lot of confidence away from this one.

“It means a lot to join the likes of Tiger (Woods), Patrick Rodgers and Maverick McNealy (all of Stanford), among others, as a Pac-12 champion. It is amazing to win both the individual and team championship.”

Karl Vilips of Stanford shot 69-68-68-70—275 to tie for sixth with Bo Peng of Washington, who wound up at 68-68-68-71—275, while Sam Renner of Washington State totaled 63-72-71-70—276 to tie for Chase Sienkiewicz of Arizona, who finished at 67-69-67-73—276.

Nate Menon of Stanford posted a score of 75-69-66-67—277 to tie for 10th with Sampson Zheng of California, who came in at 72-68-68-69—277.

Leading the way for Southern California was Mahanth Chirravuri in tie for 20th at 69-72-69-70—280, while Mason Greene of UCLA finished solo 29th at 73-67-73-69—282.

Rounding out the scoring for team champion Stanford were Barclay Brown in a tie for 20th at 71-70-71-68—280, Ethan Ng in a tie for 34th at 70-70-70-74—284, and Dean Greyserman in solo 71st at 80-72-73-84—309.

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