May 20, 2005
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The 13th-ranked Tennessee men's golf team fought through an hour-long weather delay and improved its score and standing during the second round of play at the NCAA East Regional. The Vols fired a 276 to go with a 282 from the first round to enter Saturday's final round in a tie for third with top seed Georgia. The Vols, seeded sixth, need a top 10 finish at the Golf Club of Tennessee (par 71, 6,864) to qualify for the NCAA Championships for the first time since 2003.
Senior Ross McGowan continues to lead the Vol charges in a tie for third with a scorecard of 66-68--134. McGowan opened the day on a positive note with a birdie on the first hole. He returned to even with a bogey on four, but came back with another birdie on six to go 1-under-par where he would enter the back nine. After consecutive birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 and a bogey on 14 he had two more birdies on 16 and 17. Despite closing with a bogey on 18, he continues to keep the Vols in the regional title hunt.
David Skinns stands two strokes back of McGowan with a 67-69--136, tying him for ninth. Skinns, a senior, struggled early with back-to-back bogeys on two and three, but came back with a birdie on five before parring the next four holes to make the turn at 1-over-par. He cut his mistakes in half on the back nine with just one bogey and four birdies on holes 10, 11, 13 and 17.
Next in Vol scoring is senior John Scott Rattan in a tie for 13th with a scorecard of 70-68--138. Rattan's improved play during the tournament has proven to be a big lift for the Vols. He displayed consistency throughout the first round going even par on nine pars. The back nine saw him record back-to-back birdies on 11 and 12. His lone mistake of the day came on 13 with a bogey, but he recovered with two more birdies on 17 and 18 to close out one of his best rounds of the year.
Freshman Ben Spickard had an 11 stroke turn-around from the first round to the second with a 71 to go with yesterday's 82 for a 153, tying him for 110th. Spickard turned in a solid round of golf that opened with five pars followed by a birdie on six and three more pars to make the turn at 1-under-par. The back nine saw him go to 2-under-par with a birdie on 14, followed by three more pars. His lone mistake came on the 18th hole where he recorded a double-bogey to end the round at even-par.
Fellow freshman Philip Pettitt rounds out the Tennessee contingent 79-75--154, which puts him in a tie for 116th. Pettitt opened play on the front nine with a 1-over-par 37 that included two bogeys and a birdie. He slipped on the back nine with a 38 that saw him record two birdies, a bogey and two double bogeys.
Fifth seed Wake Forest continues to lead the tournament with a scorecard of 271-283--554. Standing second is the third seed, Florida, with a 557. Rounding out the top five after Tennessee and Georgia is fourth-seeded Duke with a 559.
Rhys Davies of East Tennessee State is the individual leader with a 66-65--131. Michael Schachner of Duke is second with a 69-63--132. McGowan joins four others in a tie for third to round out the top individuals.
The Vols continue play Saturday with the final round of play. They will look to be among the top 10 which advance to the NCAA Championships, June 1-4, at Caves Valley Golf Course in Baltimore, Md.
|6.||East Tennessee State||281-285--566|
|1.||Rhys Davies, East Tennessee State||66-65--131|
|2.||Michael Schachner, Duke||69-63--132|
|3.||Ross McGowan, Tennessee||66-68--134|
|Matt Every, Florida||71-63--134|
|Dustin Johnson, Coastal Carolina||65-69--134|
|Kyle Reifers, Wake Forest||65-69--134|
|Brendon Todd, Georgia||66-68--134|
|13th-t||John Scott Rattan||70-68--138|