Senior Shintaro Ban wins third career tournament, team captures NIT title in dominant fashion
TUCSON, Ariz. (UNLVRebels.com) – The UNLV men’s golf team finished up the second round of play on Monday with a tournament-low 22-under-par 266 after play was suspended because of darkness Sunday, then shot a final-round-low 18-under 270 to win the team title by eight shots at the National Invitational Tournament at Omni Tucson National’s Catalina Course (par 72, 7,200 yards).
The Rebels turned in a 54-hole total of 50-under 814, 12 shots better than second-place Arizona State. There were a total of 16 teams competing.
Individually, senior Shintaro Ban shot three rounds in the 60s (68-65-67=200, -16) to capture medalist honors by two shots. It is his second tournament victory of the season and third of his career.
All five UNLV golfers finished among the tournament’s top 12. There were a total of 92 golfers competing.
In a rare feat, all five Rebels were under par for all three rounds of the tournament. In fact, of the 15 total UNLV rounds, three were 70s and one was a 71, and all four came during the first round.
COMPLETE REBEL SCORES:
• 1st – Shintaro Ban, senior (68-65-67=200, -16)
• 5th – Garrick Higgo, freshman (71-66-66=203, -13)
• 6th – Jack Trent, freshman (60-66-68=204, -12)
• T12th – Harry Hall, junior (70-69-69=208, -8)
• T12th – Justin Kim, sophomore (70-69-69=208, -8)
TOP FIVE TEAMS:
1. UNLV (278-266-270=814, -50)
2. Arizona State (267-275-284, -38)
3. Arizona (279-274-277=830, -34)
4. North Texas (281-283-272=836, -28)
5. Iowa State (281-277-282=840, -24)
• This was UNLV’s second tournament of the spring season.
• This is UNLV’s first team title of the season. The Rebels finished tied for second in their last outing in Hawaii at the spring season opener, which was a season-best at the time.
• This was UNLV’s seventh tournament of the season.
• UNLV finished tied for second at last year’s N.I.T.
• Ban, who has recorded five top-10 finishes including three top fives in seven events this season, has recently been named a candidate for the Ben Hogan Award, the Fred Haskins Award and is in the running to be included on the Arnold Palmer Cup team. The Hogan and Haskins Awards are National Golfer of the Year honors.
• Last season, UNLV won the Mountain West Championship for the second straight year, captured an NCAA Regional title and advanced to the ‘Elite Eight’ at the NCAA Championship.
• Ban and Hall are both 2017 All-Mountain West Team honorees, and Ban earned honorable mention All-America. In addition, Ban was named an All-America Scholar.
• UNLV has an active NCAA record of 29 consecutive regional appearances.
• This season marks the 31st at UNLV for Hall of Fame head coach Dwaine Knight.
NEXT FOR THE REBELS: UNLV will be back in action Monday-Wednesday, March 5-7, when it hosts the Southern Highlands Collegiate at Southern Highlands Golf Club in Las Vegas.