BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Juan Camilo Vesga improved to 3-0 at the SEC Match Play and led Arkansas to a 3-2 victory over LSU in the semifinals. The Razorbacks will face Vanderbilt for the championship Tuesday morning starting at 9 am.
The semifinal match with LSU began Monday but was suspended at 6:19 due to darkness. When play was halted, Arkansas led 2-1 with two matches tied.
The semifinal matches in the balance included Vesga with one hole and Luke Long with two holes.
Vesga and Nicholas Arcement were tied through nine holes as each won two. Vesga jumped out to a 2-up lead with wins on the 10th and 11th holes. Arcemont tied the match with wins on the 12th and 17th holes, which is where the match stood before play was suspended. Vesga secured the winning point Tuesday morning with a birdie on 18 for the 1-up victory.
Long’s back-and-forth match was tied through 16. His opponent, Cohen Trolio, started the morning on the 17th hole with a birdie to go 1-up. The two recorded pars on the 18th hole to give LSU its second point.
As he has in the previous matches, Segundo Oliva Pinto posted an early win for the Razorbacks, claiming a 3&1 victory over Michael Sanders. Oliva Pinto was 2-up early before Sanders won three straight to take a 1-up lead. However, Oliva Pinto won holes 9, 10 and 11 to regain a 2-up advantage. Sanders trimmed his deficit by winning the 14th hole before Oliva Pinto closed out the match by winning the 15th and 17th holes.
Mateo Fernandez de Oliveira raced out to a 4-up lead by sinning five straight holes on the front nine. LSU’s Garrett Barber won four times over a six-hole span to trim his deficit to one with four to play. However, Fernandez de Oliveira closed out the match by winning the 16th and 17th holes for the 3&2 decision.
Like Vesga, Wil Gibson’s match came down to the 18th hole late Monday but LSU’s Trey Winstead was able to get the 1-up win with a par.
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