July 13, 2012
EDMOND, Okla. - UC Davis senior Tyler Raber held off Iowa's Steven Ihm by a single shot with a final round score of 1-over 72 to win the 109th Trans-Mississippi Championship Thursday at Oak Tree National in Edmond, Okla.
Since its founding in 1901, the Trans-Miss Championship has grown to become one of the premier amateur golf events in the nation.
Raber's victory marks the biggest non-collegiate amateur tournament win in UC Davis men's golf program history. The Trans-Miss Championship ranks 67th in the world. In comparison, the California State Fair Amateur - which has seen four Aggie champions - ranks 80th in the world. Gregg Wilkinson, TJ Moulton, Eric Restrepo and Matt Hansen each hold claim to a California State Fair Amateur title.
Raber led the field after his first two rounds, posting scores of 70 and an impressive 65, respectively, to move to seven under. He shot a solid first round, parring his first eight straight holes until a bogey on the par-4 ninth hole moved him to one over. As he turned the corner, Raber birdied on the tenth hold, then parred five in a row before another birdie on the par-5 16th hole moved him to one under where he would finish.
His second round was even more impressive as he quickly moved to six under after birdies on five of his first nine holes. He briefly moved to five under with consecutive bogeys on holes three and four, but his seventh and eighth birdies of the day moved him to seven under for the day as he took the lead.
Raber was tied for second after his third round included five bogeys and just one birdie, but he returned to his steady shooting in the final round of the tournament to set up his spectacular finish. He opened with a birdie, parred the next hole, then bogeyed on the par-4 12th hole, but six straight pars to close out his front nine kept him at two under for the tournament.
He opened and closed his back nine with bogeys, but a birdie on hole two followed by six pars sealed his victory over Ihm and the rest of the field.