NEW LONDON -- It wasn't the finish N.C. State's Matt Hill was after Sunday in the final round of his last ACC Golf Championship.
Tied for the individual lead with Georgia Tech's Chesson Hadley after two rounds, the defending ACC champ was hoping to post a good early score and put up a winning total on a brutally windy day at the Old North State Club. Instead, the junior saw his round derailed by bogeys at the ninth and 10th holes and shot a 2-over 74 to finish third.
Hill finished at 7-under 209, three shots behind Hadley, who claimed medalist honors. The Yellow Jackets successfully defended their ACC title with a 13-shot win over Virginia. Wake Forest and Duke tied for third place.
"Obviously, I'm a little disappointed," Hill said. "Every time I tee it up my goal is to win. Going in, I felt I had a good chance to win, but that's the way golf is. You can't win 'em all."
Hill was 1-under for his round when he played the long par-4 ninth. He pulled a 6-iron approach, the ball settling on wood chips beside the cart path, chipped 15 feet past the flag and missed the par putt. On the 10th, he drove into a bunker, was long on his approach and bogeyed again.
"I kept grinding but I wasn't playing that well," he said. "I didn't feel it slipping away, but it did change the way I was playing. I had to be more aggressive because I felt I needed to make some birdies."
Hill, who will turn pro in June and skip his senior year in college, now turns his sights on defending the NCAA individual championship he won last year. It was the eighth victory in a dream year in which the Canadian was a first-team All-America and received the Jack Nicklaus Award as the nation's best golfer.
"I feel pretty confident going into nationals," Hill said.