HOWEYINTHEHILLS, Fla. – The Saint Leo men’s golf team had their best finish of the spring at the Mission Inn Spring Fling, as they finished sixth out of 12 teams, Sunday afternoon from the par-72, 6,940-Yard Las Colinas golf course.

Each of the Lions four finishing competitors finished in the top-39 of the 72-person field. Individually, however, Stetson’s Sam Ryder (72-70-70—212) finished as the tournament medalist with a score of four-under.

Ryder’s efforts on the course also led to the Hatters (297-295-293—885) clinching the Spring Fling win with a score of 21-over. The win unseated the Saint Leo group who won the 2010 Mission Inn.  IPEW (300-297-291—888) closed as the runner-up at 24-over while Appalachian State University (300-301-305—906) rounded-out the top-three at 42-over.

By the end of the tournament, just six shots separated the Saint Leo from a top-three finish.

For the Lions, Nick Brothers (75-73-73—221) saw second and third round scores of 73 help him to a season-best fifth place finish at five-over. Overall, the sophomore finished nine strokes off of Ryder’s winning pace.

Freshman Mark Sabatino (76-77-78—231) shot consistent mid-70’s scores throughout his three rounds, as he finished behind his teammate, Brothers, with a score of 15-over.

One shot behind Sabatino was Chaz Heinz (80-75-77—232). After shooting a first round 80, the freshman rebounded by firing scores of 75 and 77 in rounds two and three. Finishing at 16-over, Heinz finished tied for 32nd.

Tom Lynn (80-77-77—234) also saw improvement over his final two rounds. The senior, also recovering from a first round 80, shot back-to-back rounds of 77 to finish at 18-over.

Codi Daudelin saw action over the final two rounds, but was ruled as a ‘Did Not Finish’ because he did not compete on in the first round.

Each finish for the Lions’ brass was their top ending score for a tournament this season.

The Lions are next scheduled to compete in one of the toughest regional tournaments of the year as they head to Miami, Fla. and the Normandy Shores Golf Course to compete in the Buccaneer Invitational. The two-day, three-round Invite is scheduled to begin on Monday, April 4.