Although several teams will have to return to the golf course to finish their second round, Oklahoma State, No. 1 in the latest Golfstat rankings and the top seed, maintained its lead in the Columbus Regional with a solid 6-under-par 278 round over The Ohio State University’s challenging Scarlet Course Tuesday.
No. 37 Penn State struggled for the second day in a row with an 11-over 295 and is in sixth place at 20-over 588, but remain very much in the hunt for a top-five finish which would give the Nittany Lions a ticket to the NCAA Championship at the Karsten Creek Golf Club, Oklahoma State’s home track in Stillwater, Okla.
The top seven teams completed their rounds and only Michigan State, which sits in eighth place, has a chance to displace one of those top seven. The Spartans trail Penn State by eight shots in relation to par and their round is nearly complete.
Oklahoma State’s 6-under round over the 7,364-yard, par-71 Scarlet course, combined with its opening-round 281, left the Cowboys at 9-under 559 heading into Wednesday’s final round. Big Ten champion Illinois, ranked 12th and seeded second, matched Oklahoma State’s 278 and is in second place, three shots behind the Cowboys at 6-under 562.
No. 43 UNLV added a 283 to its opening-round 282 and is alone in third at 7-over 575, 13 shots behind the Fighting Illini. No. 35 Northwestern is another eight shots behind the Runnin’ Rebels at 15-over 583. No. 13 Texas Tech carded a solid 4-over 288 to hold down fifth at 17-over 585.
Penn State is just three shots behind Texas Tech in sixth at 588. The Nittany Lions had opened with a 293 Monday. The top five teams and one individual not from one of the advancing teams earn a ticket to Karsten Creek. The NCAA Championship tees off May 25 in Stillwater.
Oklahoma State was led by two of the four players tied for first in the individual chase as Matthew Wolff, a freshman from Agoura Hills, Calif., and Zach Bauchou, a junior from Forest, Va., are both at 3-under 139. Wolff added a 2-under 69 to his opening-round 70 while Bauchou fired a 3-under 68 after opening with an even-par 71.
The Cowboys have two more players in the top 10 as Kristoffer Ventura, a senior from Norway, is tied for seventh at 1-under 141 after adding an even-par 71 to his opening-round 70 and Viktor Hovland, a sophomore from Norway and the No. 7 player in the World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR), is tied for 10th at 1-over 143 after adding a 1-under 70 to his opening-round 73.
Rounding out the Oklahoma State lineup was Austin Eckroat, a freshman from Edmond, Okla. who added a 74 to his opening-round 70 to join the group tied for 15th at 2-over 144.
Joining Wolff and Bauchou in the quartet tied for first in the individual standings were two Illinois players, Nick Hardy, a senior from Northbrook, Ill. and No. 11 in the WAGR, and Michael Feagles, a sophomore from Scottsdale, Ariz. Hardy fired a 3-under 68 to get it to 3-under for the tournament while Feagles added an even-par 71 to his opening-round 68.
UNLV’s Harry Hall, a junior from England, and Texas Tech’s Hurly Long, a senior from Germany, are tied for fifth at 2-under 140 as both players rattled off a second straight 1-under 70.
Penn State was led by junior JD Hughes, a Carlisle product and the reigning Pennsylvania Amateur champion who added a 74 to his opening-round 71 and is among the group tied for 17th at 3-over 145. Senior Cole Miller, a Northwestern Lehigh product who claimed the Washington Regional individual title a year ago, added a 73 to his opening-round 74 and is tied for 24th at 5-over 147.
Charles Huntzinger, a junior from Duluth, Ga., and Ryan Davis, a sophomore from Berkeley Heights, N.J., are both among the group tied for 27th at 6-over 148. Huntzinger added a 75 to his opening-round 73 while Davis improved off an opening-round 75 with a 2-over 73.
Rounding out the Penn State lineup was Alec Bard, a sophomore from New Hartford, N.Y. who is in the group tied for 61st at 155 after adding a 76 to his opening-round 79.
In the Kissimmee Regional, No. 8 Florida, seeded second, put a little distance between itself and Central Florida as the Gators fired a 13-under 275 over the Reunion Resort’s 7,154-yard, par-71 Watson Course for a 25-under 551 total that left them five shots clear of the Knights.
The teams had shared the opening-round, each carding a 12-under 276. UCF posted a solid 8-under 280 in Tuesday’s second round to sit in second place at 20-under 556. No. 29 Kent State, which carded its second straight 8-under 280, is in third place at 16-under 560. Yet another Florida team, No. 10 South Florida, the American Athletic Conference champion, is holding down fourth at 13-under 563, three shots behind Kent State, after adding a 7-under 281 to its opening-round 282.
No. 5 Vanderbilt, the top seed, finds itself in a three-way tie for fifth with No. 44 Colorado State and No. 17 North Carolina at 11-under 565, as the Commodores scramble to make sure they grab a ticket to Karsten Creek.
Vanderbilt added a 6-under 282 to its opening-round 283, Colorado State surged into contention for an NCAA Championship berth with an 11-under 277, and North Carolina matched Vanderbilt’s first two rounds, adding a 282 Tuesday to its opening-round 283.
Former Haverford School standout Cole Berman and Big East champion Georgetown got caught on the course during a two-plus hour rain delay before finishing with a solid 2-over 290 that left the Hoyas in 13th place in the 14-team field at 11-over 587. Georgetown is playing some decent golf, but the level of competition at an NCAA regional is pretty stiff.
Florida was led by Southeastern Conference individual champion Andy Zhang, a sophomore from Reunion, Fla. who is one of three players tied for the individual lead at 8-under 136. Zhang carded his second straight 68.
Backing up Zhang for the Gators was John Axelson, a freshman from Denmark who is tied for fourth at 7-under 137, just a shot behind the leaders. Axelson added a 68 to his opening-round 69.
Chris Nido, a freshman from Miami, is in the g group tied for 15th at 3-under 141 after adding a 2-under 70 to his opening-round 71. Gordon Neale, a senior from Dove Canyon, Calif., is in the group tied for 18th at 2-under 142, although the Gators were able to toss his 2-over 74.
Alejandro Tosti, a senior from Argentina and No. 14 in the WAGR, gave Florida a third sub-70 round for the day as he carded a 3-under 69 to join the group tied for 23rd at 1-under 143.
Joining Zhang in the three-way tie for the individual lead at 8-under 136 were UCF’s Kyler Tate, a junior from Winter Garden, Fla., and North Carolina’s Austin Hitt, a sophomore from Longwood, Fla. Tate blitzed the Watson Course with the round of the day, a 7-under 65 while Hitt produced his second straight 4-under 68.
Joining Florida’s Axelson in a tie for fourth at 7-under 137 was Kent State’s Ian Holt, a senior form Stow, Ohio who added a 3-under 69 to his opening-round 68.
Eduardo Blochtein, a sophomore from Delray Beach, Fla., continued to lead the way for Georgetown as he added a 1-under 71 to his opening-round 72 for a 1-under 143 total that left him in the group tied for 23rd.
Jack Musgrave, a senior from Chesterton, Ind., and Patrick DiPasquale, a sophomore from Rochester, N.Y., both landed among the group tied for 55th at 4-over 148 as each carded a second consecutive 2-over 74. Berman, the 2015 BMW Philadelphia Amateur champion in his final season at Georgetown, matched Blochtein’s 1-under 71 for the low round of the day for the Hoyas and is in the group tied for 62nd at 5-over 149.
Rounding out the Georgetown lineup was its third senior, Sam Madsen of Madison, Wis., who is alone in 70th place at 153 after adding a 76 to his opening-round 77.
In the Raleigh Regional, No. 16 Texas, seeded second, was led by its powerful senior tandem of Doug Ghim of Arlington Heights, Ill., and Scottie Scheffler of Dallas, as it fired an 11-under 273 over the Lonnie Poole Golf Course at North Carolina State to take a commanding eight-shot lead at 24-under 544.
The Longhorns had opened up with a 13-under 271 over the 7,273-yard, par-71 Lonnie Poole layout. Texas was being chased by three ACC teams as No. 36 N.C. State, playing on its home course, is second at 16-under 552 after a 7-under 277, and No. 4 Georgia Tech, the ACC champion and top seed, and No. 28 Duke are tied for third at 15-under 553. The Yellow Jackets added a 5-under 279 to its opening-round 274 while the Blue Devils had the best round of the day, a 12-under 272, after opening with a 281.
Ghim, the low amateur in last month’s Masters, cooled off a little from his opening-round 64 with a sparkling 5-under 66 to lead the pack in the individual chase at 12-under 130. Ghim was the runnerup in last summer’s U.S. Amateur and then went 4-0 in the U.S. team’s 19-7 victory over Great Britain & Ireland in the Walker Cup Match a couple of weeks later.
Scheffler, the low amateur in last summer’s U.S. Open at Erin Hills and also a member of the U.S. Walker Cup team, did Ghim one better Tuesday with a 6-under 65 that left him tied for fourth at 8-under 136.
Backing up the top two were Spencer Soosman, a sophomore from Westlake Village, Calif., and Steven Chervony, a junior from Boca Raton, Fla., both of whom are among the group tied for 22nd at 2-under 140. Both Soosman and Chervony added an even-par 71 to an opening round of 2-under 69.
Rounding out the Texas lineup was Drew Jones, a freshman from Decatur, Texas who is in the group tied for 63rd at 7-over 149 after carding a 3-over 74.
North Carolina State’s Benjamin Shipp, a sophomore from Duluth, Ga., surged into second place at 11-under 131, a shot behind Ghim, on the strength of a scintillating 7-under 64 on his home course. Augusta’s Broc Everett, a senior from West Des Moines, Iowa is another two shots behind Shipp in third at 9-under 133 after firing a 5-under 66. Joining Texas’ Scheffler in the tie for fourth at 8-under 134 was N.C. State’s Stephen Franken, who added a 2-under 69 to his opening-round 65.
In the Bryan Regional, No. 2 Texas A&M, the top seed, remained in front of the pack, although No. 14 Clemson surged within a shot of the Aggies at the Traditions Golf Club, their 7,121-yard, par-72 home course.
With Chandler Phillips, a junior from Huntsville, Texas and Brandon Smith, a sophomore from Frisco, Texas, sharing the individual lead, the Aggies carded their second straight 9-under 279 for an 18-under 558 total.
Clemson fired a 12-under 276 after opening with a 283 to move into second place at 17-under 559. No. 11 Baylor, seeded second, added an even-par 288 to its opening-round 282 and is alone in third at 6-under 570. No. 26 UCLA is another six shots behind the Bears in fourth at even-par 576 after a second consecutive even-par 288.
No. 34 Mississippi is in fifth place at 3-over 579 after adding a 3-under 285 to its opening-round 294.
Phillips, No. 15 in the WAGR, and Smith continued to move in tandem as each carded a second consecutive 4-under 68 to share first place in the individual standings at 8-under 136.
Backing up the top two for the Aggies was Andrew Paysse, a senior from Temple, Texas who carded A&M’s third 68 in the round to end up among the group tied for eighth at 4-under 140. Dan Erickson, a sophomore from Whittier, Calif., is in the group tied for 25th at 2-over 146 after carding a 3-over 75.
Rounding out the Texas A&M lineup was Walker Lee, a freshman from Houston, who is in the group tied for 37th at 148 after matching Erickson’s 3-over 75.
A couple of teammates from the winning U.S. Walker Cup team, Ole Miss junior Braden Thornberry, the reigning NCAA individual champion from Olive Branch, Miss., and Clemson sophomore Doc Redman, the reigning U.S. Amateur champion from Raleigh, N.C., are two of the three players tied for third at 7-under 137, a shot behind the co-leaders.
Thornberry, No. 2 in the WAGR, added a 4-under 68 to his opening-round 68 while Redman fired a 5-under 67 after opening with a 2-under 70.
Redman’s teammate, Turk Petit, a freshman from Auburn, Ala., is the third member of the trio tied for third at 137. Petit had the best round of the day, a 7-under 65, after opening with a 72.
In the Norman Regional, No. 3 Oklahoma, the top seed and reigning national champion, remained on top at its home course, the 7,452-yard, par-72 Jimmie Austin OC Golf Club layout, adding a 4-under 284 to its opening-round 283 for a 9-under 567 total.
No. 33 Pepperdine, the perennial West Coast Conference power, surged into second on the strength of a 14-under 274 for a 7-under 569 total, two shots behind the Sooners. The Waves improved 21 shots from their opening-round 295.
No. 27 North Florida posted a 5-under 283 to move into third at 5-under 571. SEC champion Auburn, ranked 10th, and No. 39 Brigham Young are tied for fourth at 3-under 573, two shots behind North Florida. Auburn added a 3-under 285 to its opening round of even-par 288 while BYU surged up the leaderboard with a 10-under 278 after opening with a 295.
The Sooners were led by individual leader Blaine Hale, a junior from Dallas who added a 3-under 69 to his opening-round 67 for an 8-under 136 total. Backing up Hale for Oklahoma was Quade Cummins, a redshirt sophomore from Weatherford, Okla. who is in the group tied for seventh at 3-under 141 after adding an even-par 72 to his opening-round 69.
Also for the Sooners, Garett Reband, a sophomore from Fort Worth, Texas, is in the group tied for 14th at 1-under 143 after adding a 1-under 71 to his opening-round 72. Junior Brad Dalke, the home boy from Norman and the 2016 U.S. Amateur runnerup, and Grant Hirschman, a senior from Collierville, Tenn., both landed in the group tied for 37th at 3-over 147. Both improved off an opening-round 75 with an even-par 72.
BYU’s Patrick Fishburn, a senior from Ogden, Utah, sits in second place in the individual chase at 7-under 137, a shot behind Hale, after firing a 6-under 66.
Pepperdine’s surge was sparked by two of the three players tied for third at 5-under 139. Joshua McCarthy, a sophomore from Danville, Calif., fired a 7-under 65 after opening with a 74 and Sahith Theegala, a junior from Chino Hills, Calif., carded a 6-under 66 after opening with a 73.
Rounding out the trio tied for third at 139 was Auburn’s Trace Crowe, who added a 3-under 69 to his opening-round 70.
In the Stockton Regional, No. 7 Alabama, seeded second, caught upstart Iowa State, the opening-round leader ranked 55th, with an 8-under 280 at The Reserve at Spanos Park that gave the Crimson Tide a 14-under 562 total.
Iowa State, which opened with a 10-under 278 over the 7,239-yard, par-72 layout, added a 4-under 284 to get a share of first with Alabama. Another Midwestern upstart, No. 43 Kansas, hung tough in third, the Jayhawks adding a 6-under 282 to their opening-round 281 for a 13-under 563 total that left them in third place, just a shot behind the co-leaders.
No. 18 Stanford added a 5-under 283 to its opening-round 285 and is alone in fourth place at 8-under 568. No. 31 TCU held down fifth place, the Horned Frogs adding a 2-under 286 to their opening-round 283 for a 7-under 569 total that left them a shot behind the Cardinal.
Alabama was led by Wilson Furr, a freshman from Jackson, Miss. who is tied for fourth at 7-under 137 after firing a brilliant 8-under 64, and Jonathan Hardee, a senior from Greer, S.C. who is in the group tied for 14th at 3-under 141 after cooling off from an opening round of 4-under 68 with a 1-over 73.
Iowa State’s Denzel Ieremia, a redshirt senior from New Zealand, continued to lead the way for the Cyclones as a second straight 68 left him in third place in the individual standings at 8-under 136. Ieremia’s teammate and countryman, sophomore Sam Vincent, posted a second straight 3-under 69 and is in the group tied for sixth at 6-under 138.
The individual lead belongs to Stanford’s Brandon Wu, a junior from Danville, Calif. who fired a second straight 5-under 67 for a 10-under 134 total.
He is being chased by Oregon’s Norman Xiong, a sophomore from Canyon Lake, Calif. and No. 4 in the WAGR. Xiong, another of the heroes in the U.S. team’s victory over Great Britain & Ireland in the Walker Cup Match last summer, added a 5-under 67 to his opening-round 68 and is just a shot behind Wu at 9-under 135.
Sharing fourth place with Alabama’s Furr at 7-under 137, a shot behind Iowa State’s Ieremia, is TCU’s Hayden Springer, a junior from Trophy Club, Texas who added a 5-under 67 to his opening-round 70.