Oct. 18, 2004
KNOXVILLE, Tenn.-- The Tennessee men's golf team posted a 284-285--569 to enter the final round of the 17th annual Coca-Cola Tournament of Champions with a four-stroke lead. Senior David Skinns stands tied for seventh with a 141 to lead the Vols. The tournament is once again being held at Holston Hills Country Club (par 71, 6,932 yards). After opening play with perfect conditions during the first round, the second round saw harsh winds and rain dominate much of the afternoon.
Skinns opened play on the first hole with a bogey, but bounced back with seven-straight pars and a birdie on nine to make the turn at even-par. A bogey on No. 12 was then followed by six more pars to end the round with a 72. The second round saw him better his score by three strokes with a 69. He opened play once again with an even-par 35 on the front nine with a birdie on two and a bogey on three. His final nine included a birdie on 11, back-to-back bogeys on Nos. 13 and 14 and birdies on 16, 17 and 18 to close out the round.
Tying Skinns in seventh is fellow senior Ross McGowan who is competing as an individual with a 69-72--141. McGowan opened play on hole 15 with a birdie. He recorded another birdie on 17 before his first bogey on the third hole. Back-to-back birdies on four and five and another on seven took him to 4-under-par for the day. He slipped on No. 10 with a double bogey to go back to 2-under where he would stay for the remainder of the round, finishing with a 69. The second round saw McGowan card two birdies and three bogeys to end the day with a 72.
Next for the Vols in a tie for 11th is junior Lloyd Campbell and sophomore Tino Weiss. Campbell fired a 73-69--142, while Weiss, who is competing as an individual, fired a 69-73--142. Campbell's round saw him record 16 pars and only two bogeys. The second round was highlighted by an eagle on the sixth hole, as well as four birdies. He also had a double-bogey and a bogey.
Weiss' day got off on the right foot with a 69 that included five birdies and three bogeys. He slipped during the second round with a 73, but added three more birdies to his total for eight and three bogeys and a double bogey.
Freshman Philip Pettitt carded a 68-77--145 to stand tied for 23rd. Pettitt's first round saw him record seven birdies to four bogeys for his second-lowest round of the fall season. His previous best was a 67 at the Bank of Tennessee/Ridges Intercollegiate. The second round saw him slip with a 77 that included one birdie, five bogeys and a double bogey.
Senior John Scott Rattan is one stroke back of Pettitt with a 71-75--146 in a tie for 27th. Rattan opened with an even-par 71 that included four birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey. The second round saw him shoot a 75 that included four more birdies, five bogeys and a triple bogey.
Rounding out the Tennessee competitors is Charlie Ford in a tie for 44th with scores of 77-72--149. Ford struggled to open play with one birdie, six bogeys and a double bogey, before improving five strokes in round two. Ford came back with three birdies, and two double bogeys to close out the round.
Head coach Jim Kelson was proud of his team's effort and looks forward to competing tomorrow in the final round.
"I was pleased with how we performed on a difficult day," Kelson said. "We did the things we needed to do to put ourselves in position to win the tournament tomorrow."
Standing four strokes back of the Vols in second is Southeastern Conference rival Alabama. The Crimson Tide carded a 285-288--573. East Tennessee State stands third with a 575, while Vanderbilt and Virginia round out the top five with scores of 576 and 580, respectively. Virginia is coached by former Vols assistant Bowen Sargent (2001-2004).
Leading the individual portion of the tournament is 2003 champion Aron Price of Georgia Southern. Price carded a pair of 69s for a 138 to lead by one stroke. There is a three-way tie for third between Rhys Davies of East Tennessee State, Chris Wheeler of Tulane and Luke List of Vanderbilt with scores of 139. Davies fired a 64 during the second round to tie for the lowest round in tournament history set by Nick Rousy of Alabama in 2001.
Tennessee returns to action Tuesday with the final round of play. The Vols are looking for their third Tournament of Champions title after winning in 1992 and 2001.
Tournament admission is free and open to the public.