CORVALLIS, Ore. - The No. 11 University of Oregon men's golf team ended three places better than its pre-event seeding and nearly won its first-ever Pac-12 Championship team title in Sunday's final-round action.
No. 6 California (359-365-348-356-1428) edged UO (364-358-344-362-1428) on the second playoff hole (hole #16) to take its first-ever league title after both teams ended regulation tied with 12-under scores for the event's four, 18-hole rounds.
The nation's top golf conference featured four more top-13 nationally ranked teams in the field - No. 5 USC (third, 368-356-356-352-1432), No. 2 UCLA (fourth, 367-352-351-363-1433), No. 9 Stanford (sixth, 373-360-353-362-1448) and No. 13 Washington (seventh, 368-366-369-364-1467).
Host Oregon State (fifth, 362-365-353-367-1447) rounded out the top seven placers in the 12-team event.
The Ducks tied their best-ever league placing (second) for the third time the past four years (including 2009 and '11) and staked their fifth runner-up effort overall since the first event in 1960 (including similar efforts in 1985 and '86).
UO also competed in a playoff last season against USC in Stanford, before the Trojans earned the win on the first playoff hole.
On Sunday on the par-72 Trysting Tree Golf Course, the Ducks carded three more rounds of par or better Sunday to give them 15 overall on the weekend in the six-count-five format.
Senior Daniel Miernicki led Duck inviduals with his best-ever league effort (second, 68-72-66-71-277 (-11)), and ended only two strokes behind Stanford's event champion, Andrew Yun (first, 68-70-69-68-275).
Oregon senior Eugene Wong followed in a two-way tie for third place (69-68-69-73-279 (-9)) with USC's Sam Smith (77-68-67-67-279).
UO staked two other top-25 finishes courtesy of 1-under tourney scores by senior Andrew Vijarro (21st-tie, 79-72-68-72-291) and redshirt junior Robbie Ziegler (21st-tie, 72-74-71-74-291).
Freshman Jonathan Woo added his second straight round of par or better (32nd-tie, 77-76-70-72-295), and sophomore Ben Itterman rounded out the Ducks' entries (59th-tie, 78-72-78-77-305).
Looking ahead, the Ducks will wait until Monday, May 7 to hear their next destination among the six regionals across the nation that will host action Thursday-Saturday, May 17-19, in Greensboro, N.C., Athens, Ga., Ann Arbor, Mich., Bowling Green, Kent,. Norman, Okla., and Stanford, Calif.
The top five teams from each regional will then earn bids to the NCAA Championships that begin Tuesday, May 29. All 30 team qualifiers will compete in three rounds of stroke play the first three days.
The top eight teams then advance to quarterfinal match play on Friday, June 1, followed by semfinal match play, Saturday, June 2, and the championship, Sunday, June 3.