BATON ROUGE - After leading the Tigers to a defense of their team title with his second collegiate victory at the 34th LSU National Invitational this past weekend, senior Austin Gutgsell was honored as the Southeastern Conference Men's Golfer of the Week on Wednesday afternoon.
Gutgsell became the second Tiger this spring to be recognized as the SEC Men's Golfer of the Week after winning an individual championship, as sophomore teammate Andrew Presley was selected March 8 after claiming medalist honors and leading LSU to the team title at the Louisiana Classics.
While firing a career-low 7-under par 65 in Sunday's final round, Gutgsell captured his second career win by four shots at the 34th LSU National Invitational held at the University Club in Baton Rouge.
After opening the weekend with back-to-back scores of 1-under 71 on Saturday, Gutgsell smashed his top career round as an LSU Tiger with a tournament-low 7-under 65 on Sunday en route to a winning 54-hole score of 9-under 207for a four-stroke victory over Purdue's Jakob Ziegler. His winning score was just one stroke shy of matching his career-best for a 54-hole event when he fired a 10-under par 206 in 54 holes en route to his first collegiate championship at the 2010 David Toms Intercollegiate.
Gutgsell was nearly flawless in his final round as he carded one eagle and six birdies with only one bogey for his lowest round as an LSU Tiger at 7-under 65. It was his best collegiate round by three strokes as his previous best of 4-under 68 was set in the second round at the 2010 David Toms Intercollegiate.
Sunday's victory marked Gutgsell's second top-five finish in his last three tournament appearances for the Tigers as he claimed his first for the year with a tie for fourth place at the Argent Financial Classic.
A native of Mandeville, La., Gutgsell led the Tigers to their third team title in their last four championship appearances of the regular season as they now look ahead to the start of postseason play at the SEC Men's Golf Championships later this month. The Tigers also captured team victories at the Louisiana Classics in Lafayette on March 6 and at the Argent Financial Classic in Choudrant, La., on March 13.
The 2012 SEC Men's Golf Championships will make its annual return to the Seaside Course at Sea Island Golf Club in St. Simons Island, Ga., on April 20-22. The Tigers are looking to improve their back-to-back fifth-place finishes in the event in their last two appearances in 2010 and 2011.