BUCS: Scottish Student Sport Championship

STAYED IN THE ROUND: St Andrews student Ben Fuller showed impressive composure coming down the stretch

Brave call from Ben Fuller pays dividends as American claims first BUCS series victory

BUCS: Wednesday, March 30th

FORMAT: 72-hole strokeplay

St Andrews student Ben Fuller overcame a couple of final-round shocks to claim his first victory in the BUCS Golf Series at Moray GC.

The 22-year-old will head to Prince’s for next month’s Tour Series Final full of confidence after winning by two shots from his Canadian room-mate Connor Rochon. The top 50 men have made it through to the finale in Kent with Devon’s Eliot Baker leading the standings while Fuller’s win saw him move up to eighth.

The University of Alabama graduate started the fourth round four clear and was one over for his round playing the 72nd hole when he courageously admitted to moving the ball barely a centimetre as his wedge got caught in his waterproof jacket. He then proceeded to get up and down for a double bogey without knowing how his closest rivals were doing.

On the front nine he recovered superbly from the shock of a quadruple bogey at the par three fourth, drawing strength from the efforts of his friend Davis Riley. The up-and-coming PGA Tour pro went into the final round of the Valspar Championship leading but then triple bogeyed the fifth. Riley played the remaining holes in two under par and only lost in a play-off to an inspired Sam Burns.


“I walked off the hole with a poor score but thought about how Davis Riley played after his problems,” said Fuller. “And I stayed in a the round and made a few birdies and was able to coast from there.”

At the testing 18th at Moray he hit his third onto a mound before calling out his freakish mis-hit. In the end a six was enough to keep him clear of his fast-finishing team-mate – Rochon closed with a 68 – and Cheshire ace Sam Hall, who was a further shot back in third thanks to 67.

MILES AHEAD: Scottish Student Sport champion Nicola Slater

Yorkshire ace Nicola Slater qualifies in style for Prince’s finale

Yorkshire champion Nicola Slater will head to next month’s British Universities & Colleges Sport Golf Tour Finals top of qualifying after a superlative display in the Scottish Students Championship at Moray this week.

The 22-year-old from Stirling University, along with the rest of the student golfers, arrived at the Highlands & Islands venue in short-sleeved shirts but left four days later watching snow fall.

The Woodsome Hall golfer certainly cashed in when the conditions were good. She opened with an eight-under-par 64 to spreadeagle the field and set up a 15-shot victory, her second in the Universities Order of Merit competition. The 150-point return also meant she jumped ahead of Scottish international Lorna McClymont in the overall standings with the top 15 heading down to Prince’s in Kent on April 10 for the 72-hole final.

At Moray, Nicola ended the day one nine ahead thanks to a stunning finish to her round. She was eight under par for her final 12 holes, sparked by an eagle at the par five seventh. The hole was playing down wind and she fired a seven iron to eight feet before sinking it for a three. 

Six more birdies followed and the following day she backed it superbly with a two under par 70 with the highlight being a chip-in eagle at the eighth. Her 10-under-par halfway total left her 10 ahead of American Josie Baker.

The following morning the temperatures plummted and windy conditions meant the scores took a dramatic turn for the worse.

Nicola’s 78 left her with an 11-shot lead going into the final round and, after lunch, she coasted to victory, bolstered by a superb eagle on the seventh. The Yorkshire county regular put a four hybrid to four feet from 185 yards and made no mistake with the putt. 

SSS CHAMPIONS: Ben Fuller and Nicola Slater
Women – Leading scores (Par 72)
1) Nicola Slater (Woodsome Hall GC) 64, 70, 78, 71, 283 (-5)
2) Lucy Jamieson (Heswall GC) 74, 76, 79, 71, 298 (+10)
3) Sasha Crockett (Burhill GC)  73, 75, 74, 77, 299 (+11)
4) Josie Baker (el caballero GC) 77, 67, 86, 71, 301 (+13)
5) Taylor White (Royal Dornoch) 74, 81, 85, 79, 319 (+31)
For all the scores click here

Men – Leading scores (Par 69)
1) Ben Fuller (Shoal Creek GC) 70, 69, 69, 72, 280 (+4)
2) Connor Rochon (Weston GC) GC 65, 72, 77, 68, 282 (+6)
3= Sam Hall (Styal GC) 72, 69, 75, 67, 283 (+7)
3= Roddy McAuley (Fereneze GC) 70, 68, 74, 71, 283 (+7)
5) Greg Hurley (The Hertfordshire GC) 69, 70, 75, 70, 284 (+8)
6= Will Coxon (Carus Green GC) 70, 73, 74, 68, 285 (+9)
6= John Oster (UHI GC) 71, 67, 78, 69, 285 (+9)
8) Declan Gray (Blairgowrie GC) 70, 72, 75, 71, 288 (+12)
9= Ben Brookes (Sandbach GC) 74, 69, 77, 69, 289 (+13)
9= George Cannon (Glenbervie GC) 70, 71, 79, 69, 289 (+13)
9= Giovani Siani (Brora GC) 69, 67, 76, 77, 289 (+13)
For all the scores click here