MELBOURNE, FL – For the second week in a row, the fourth time this year, and the sixth time in his career, Florida Southern's John VanDerLaan has been selected as the Sunshine State Conference Player of the Week in men's golf.
One week after his record-setting win in the Panther Invitational, VanDerLaan finished the prestigious Southeastern Collegiate tied for first with West Florida's Chandler Blanchet after each golfer had a final score of six-under-par 210. Blanchet's opening-round 64 had put him six shots in front, but VanDerLaan chipped away and caught him on the final hole with second and third-round scores of 68 and 72. That set up what turned out to be a marathon playoff between the reigning Division II Player-of-the-Year (Blanchett) and this year's top-ranked individual (VanDerLaan). Blanchet eventually won on the eighth playoff hole, but only after the two golfers tried to break the tie on four different holes ranging from par-3 to par-5.
VanDerLaan tied for the tournament lead with 14 birdies, and the top-five finish was the 19th of his career. That ties him with John Coultas for the most all-time at Florida Southern. His efforts helped the Moccasins tie for fifth in team standings in a tournament that featured all of the top-10 ranked teams in Division II men's golf.
Florida Southern is playing this week in the Bobcat Invitational hosted by Georgia College where six of the top-10 meet again at Cuscowilla on Lake Oconee in Eatonton, Georgia.