OLD HICKORY, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin golf team made a push during the second round to take the lead after 36 holes of the TSU Big Blue Intercollegiate, which is being played at Hermitage Golf Club Presidents Reserve.
The Skyhawks were tied for second with a 300 (+12) after this morning’s opening round before posting a 287 (-1) this afternoon. That second round total was seven shots better than any of the remaining dozen teams in the field and has UT Martin ahead by three strokes going into the final 18 holes.
“The wind was really something else today,” Skyhawk head coach Jerry Carpenter said. “It was howling up until about the last hour of play this afternoon and that made it tough on everybody, not just us. I’m proud of the way we hung in there in the first round and then all five players performed well in the second round. We made the best out of a tough day and will look to carry that into tomorrow.”
Hunter Richardson led UT Martin with a 144 (E) today, as the junior from Clarksville followed a 75 this morning with a 69 this afternoon. He is tied for third out of 70 golfers in the field, three shots behind co-leaders Tyler Gray of Evansville and Jermey Fultz of Tennessee State.
Austin Swafford shot a team-best 72 in the first round before carding a 73 in Round 2. He is currently tied for seventh with a 145 (+1) after accumulating a team-high 26 pars and an eagle today. The Skyhawks’ third top-10 scorer is Gavin Shellnut, who tallied rounds of 76-72 to rank 10th with a 148 (+4) through two rounds of play.
Jack Story (77, 73) shaved four strokes off his first-round tally to sit in a tie for 14th place with a 150 (+6). Tyler Guy also showed improvement from Round 1 (79) to Round 2 (75) today, wrapping up his day with a 154 (+10).
UT Martin also boasts a pair of individuals in the tournament. Zach Haynes was responsible for an eagle today, shooting rounds of 73-77 for a total of 150 (+6). Cameron Smith opened with an 82 this morning but rebounded with a 75 this afternoon, ending with a 157 (+13).
The Skyhawks will look to dodge the rain during tomorrow’s final round, which is set for an 8 a.m. shotgun start. Isolated and scattered thunderstorms are in the forecast throughout the day as UT Martin bids for its fourth tournament win of the 2016-17 campaign.
Photo courtesy of Dave Winder/Murray State