Kang
USC
Freshman Jeffrey Kang finished a season-best third to lead a quartet of Trojans in the top seven as the No. 25 USC men’s golf team won its first tournament since 2009 by 14 strokes at the 39th annual ASU Thunderbird Invitational on Sunday at the Karsten G.C. in Tempe.

The Trojans entered the final round with a nine-stroke lead and extended it quickly, leading by almost 20 early before finishing with the 14-stroke win at 15-under 837 (287-271-279). Troy’s final round tied for low of the day. San Diego State finished second (851) with UNLV third (857).

USC’s win follows a third-place finish at the Callaway Match Play Championships, marking Troy’s two best finishes of the season.

“This is the best time of year to be playing well,” USC head coach Chris Zambri said. “We are going to keep working hard so we can make this the best season in Trojan men’s golf history.”

Kang carded his second consecutive round in the 60s for his fifth of the year and his 5-under 208 (71-69-68) was a season-best. Kang was 5-under through 13 holes before a couple late bogeys kept him from a share of first.

Junior Steve Lim (70-68-71) and sophomore Martin Trainer (74-66-69) also carded season-low finishes with their tie for fourth at 4-under 209. Lim was 2-under on the front 9 and even on the back 9 before a late double bogey on 18. Trainer’s fine round featured four birdies through 17 holes before his first blemish, also a double on 18.

Sam Smith notched his second top-10 finish with a tie for seventh at 2-under 211 (72-68-71). Smith was 4-under through 10, including an eagle on the par 5 10th, before giving some back on the next six holes. He got back to even with a birdie on 17.

Sophomore T.J. Vogel tied for 45th at 8-over 221 (76-73-72) with a four-birdie, five-bogey final round. Freshman Ramsey Sahyoun, playing individually, tied for 40th at 7-over 220 (74-72-74).