Site: Kiawah Island, S.C.
Course: Oak Point Golf Course (Par 72, 6,701 yards)
Tournament: AGT Intercollegiate
HPU Team Standing: 9th of 10 teams (292-303, +19)
Top HPU Individual: Brandon Einstein, T-17th (70-75-145, +1)
Next HPU Round: Tuesday, Jan. 26 — at AGT Intercollegiate (Kiawah Island, S.C.)
KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. – The High Point University men’s golf team stumbled a bit in the second round of the Any Given Tuesday Intercollegiate on Monday (Jan. 15), sliding down to ninth place at +19. Redshirt junior Ryan McCarthy paced the Panthers with a 74 in round two, followed by Brandon Einstein and Grady Newton each with 75s.
“We weren’t very sharp mentally or physically today,” head coach Brady Gregor said of his team’s performance. “This team has too much talent to shoot the scores we shot today. The guys need to step up and believe in themselves like I do and go have the lowest round of the tournament tomorrow.”
Once again playing together as a team in two threesomes as a COVID-19 safety precaution, High Point started on the 10th hole for the second day in a row. McCarthy had a solid start to the round, parring his first eight holes before breaking into the red numbers with a birdie on 18 along the water. McCarthy and the rest of the Panthers struggled to put red numbers on the front once the wind picked up as he bogeyed the par-5 fourth and then carded back-to-back bogeys on six and the par-3 seventh to end his day two-over.
Einstein took advantage of the par-5 12th for the second day in a row to get to one-under but gave the stroke back along with another after a double on 13. The redshirt sophomore recovered nicely with a birdie on the treacherous 14th but couldn’t hold the momentum, bogeying 16 and 18 to make the turn at +2 on the day. Einstein carded one of HPU’s three birdies on the front in round two with a four on the par-5 fourth, but a bogey on three and another on six ended his day at three-over, dropping him to +1 overall and in a share for 17th-place.
Like McCarthy, Newton had a solid front and also made the turn at one-under. The freshman bogeyed 11 but immediately bounced back with his first birdie of the tournament on 12. He then rattled off five straight pars before picking up his second birdie of the day on 18. Newton started the back with a trio of pars before giving one back on four to drop to even and then took a triple bogey on six, one of four HPU triple bogeys on the front nine, to finish +3 on the day.
Graduate student Alec Weary carded three birdies on the day to tie for the round-two team lead with Einstein, including the other two birdies on the front. Weary picked up his first birdie of the round on the 17th, but a tough stretch of two doubles and a bogey in his first five holes had him making the turn at +4. He bogeyed the first but quickly recovered with a birdie on three. His final birdie of the round came on the par-5 eighth, but a triple and a bogey on the four holes in between gave him a 79 on the day.
Adam Hooker and Christian Castillo each picked up a birdie on the 12th hole but couldn’t get into a rhythm the rest of the day, finishing with an 80 and 85, respectively.
Kennesaw State and Coastal Carolina are tied for the lead at -19 heading into the final round, with the Chanticleers going 13-under on Monday to make up seven strokes on the Owls. Florida Gulf Coast and Jacksonville State are the only other two teams under par, ending the day at -6 and -4, respectively. Individually, Austin Cherichella of FGCU and Connor Coffee of KSU are tied for the lead at seven-under, with Jesus Montenegro of Jacksonville State and Zack Taylor of Coastal one shot back in a tie for third.
The AGT Intercollegiate wraps up tomorrow morning (Jan. 26) with High Point scheduled to tee off of hole 10 at 8:45 a.m.