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Wednesday April 9, 2014 Gators golf coach Buddy Alexander shoots a hole-in-one at the Masters Par-3 Contest

Updated: 7:24pm, April 9

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Florida men’s golf coach Buddy Alexander fulfilled a dream in 1987 when he played in the Masters for the first time as reigning U.S. Amateur champion.

Buddy Alexander

To make the experience even more memorable, Alexander's playing partner was defending champion Jack Nicklaus.

Alexander had another special day at Augusta on Wednesday.

He made a hole-in-one.

"It was the only good shot I hit all day,'' Alexander quipped Wednesday evening. "I butchered the first hole. That's OK. I didn't hurt anybody. And then I hit a 60-degree wedge from 73 yards out on the second hole and it trickles in. It was unexpected."

Alexander aced the second hole during the annual Par-3 Contest at the Masters to the delight of his playing partners: former UF golfers Billy Horschel and Matt Every.

Horschel and Every tee off in the Masters on Thursday morning but spent Wednesday hanging with their college coach.

"It was awesome,'' Alexander said. "Billy and Matt are two of my favorite guys. I think they were more excited than I was. That made it even more special. I knew I hit it solid. I hit it where I was aiming. It was perfect."

Alexander said it was the sixth hole-in-one of his career, and get this, not even the first one on No. 2 of Augusta's Par-3 course. He aced the hole when he was in college at Georgia Southern while playing a round with a member of Augusta National.

U.S. Amateur champs receive honorary invites to the Masters each year. Alexander has returned many times, including a year ago to watch UF senior T.J. Vogel play in the tournament.

After 1998 Masters champion Mark O’Meara recorded the 78th ace in the history of the Par-3 Contest on Wednesday, Alexander came along 90 minutes later to register No. 79. 

Every nearly joined the club on the third hole when his shot came to rest about an inch from the hole.

It has been a good week for the 61-year-old Alexander, whose son Tyler Alexander, a former Gator golfer, won his second career NGA Pro Golf Tour event on Sunday in Ocala.

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