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FRANKLIN, Tenn. -- Tyler Merkel led the Ball State men’s golf team Sunday with a 1-over par final round of 72 at the Mason Rudolph Championship.

The Cardinals posted a team score of 298 for the day and finished in a tie for 12th place at 902 (+50) for the tournament.

McCormick Clouser, who closed with a 73, was Ball State’s top finisher for the week. Clouser tied for 29th with a 54-hole total of 220 (+7).

Top-ranked Alabama turned in the round of the week Sunday with a 12-under par 272 to jump back in front of tournament host Vanderbilt for the title. The Crimson Tide finished nine shots clear of the 14th-ranked Commodores. Louisville and Mercer tied for third.

Florida State’s Jack Maguire carded his second straight 66 to extend his overnight lead. Maguire finished at 10 under par for the tournament, winning by seven shots on the individual leaderboard.

In addition to Merkel's 72 and Clouser’s 73 on Sunday, Ball State also counted a 73 from James Blackwell and an 80 from Keegan McKinney. Zach Yinger shot an 82.

Merkel was the second-best finisher for Ball State behind Clouser, tying for 42nd with a three-round total of 225 (+12). McKinney finished at 229, Blackwell at 232 and Yinger at 241.

This weekend’s 14-team tournament featured three of the top 15 teams in the country and 10 of the top 80 in the Golfstat rankings.

Ball State will return to action next weekend, competing Saturday and Sunday at Ohio State’s Robert Kepler Invitational. The event will be played on the Scarlet Course at the Ohio State University Golf Club in Columbus, Ohio.

For the most up-to-date news on Ball State men’s golf, follow @bsuathletics, @BallStateMGolf and @mikefleck on Twitter.


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