Ben Taylor holes decider in US championship victory

Ben Taylor

England’s Ben Taylor holed the winning putt to seal his university’s victory in the biggest championship on the US college circuit.

Taylor, from Walton Heath in Surrey, rolled in a nine-foot par putt on the last hole to win his match one up and score the deciding point in the men’s NCAA Championship at The Concession Club in Florida.

The win capped his college career and gave Louisiana State University (LSU) their fifth victory in the championship, but their first for 60 years.

Taylor, who also scored the deciding point in the semi-final, said afterwards in a television interview: “It was a perfect moment to end a perfect college career, and I couldn’t be more happy.

“I’m emotional and don’t even know what else to say. It’s been a great day, and what a finish to my college career. I’m so happy, just a great feeling.” 

The 22-year-old (Image © Leaderboard Photography) was watched by his parents throughout the final match. He was  two up in the early stages but after losing three straight holes, from the 11th, he went one down.

That’s where he stayed until the 17th, where both players put their drives in good positions on the reachable par five. Taylor knew his opponent would probably make birdie and fired a 4-iron from 258 yards to within five feet of the hole. He duly holed the putt for eagle and squared the match.

On the 18th, the door was opened when his opponent bogeyed the hole and Taylor, who had left his birdie putt well short, made no mistakes.

Taylor is a member of the England Golf men’s squad and an England international who has won on the US college circuit.