June 26, 2013
BEAUMONT – Former Lamar University golfers Chris Stroud and Shawn Stefani have made June a month to remember as each player has made his mark on the PGA Tour.
Stroud, who starred for the Cardinals from 2000-04, just missed out on his first career PGA win when he lost in a playoff to Ken Duke at the Travelers Championship over the weekend. The second place finish was the highest of his career and the $658,800 payday pushed his yearly earnings to $1,359,584.
The two-time Ping All-America provided the shot of the tournament as he chipped in on his 72nd hole for a birdie to force a playoff with Duke at 12-under par. Duke would birdie the second playoff hole to win the tournament from the TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Conn.
Stroud, who has five top 20 finishes this season in 12 made cuts, is the only golfer to be named Southland Conference Player of the Year four times. A Port Neches-Groves product, Stroud led the Cardinals to three league titles and tied for third as an individual at the 2003 NCAA Championships.
One week earlier at the U.S. Open from Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, Pa., Stefani made history when he recorded a hole-in-one on the par-3 17th hole. The three-time All-Southland Conference performer used a four iron to ace the 213-yard hole.
Merion has now hosted five U.S. Opens and Stefani was the first player to record a hole-in-one on the course in major championship play. Stefani shot a final round 69 and finished tied for 59th in the event.
A native of Baytown, Stefani helped the Cardinals to a pair of league titles during his career from 2001-05. Stefani also helped the Cardinals to four straight NCAA Regional appearances tying for 38th at the 2004 Central Regional during his junior season.