Sept. 25, 2012
Related Link: Live Scoring from St. Mary's Invitational
Seaside, Calif. - With three golfers inside the top 30 individuals, Western Carolina concluded play at the St. Mary's Invitational on Monday in seventh place out of 15 teams at the Black Horse & Bayonet Golf Course. Sophomore J.T. Poston recovered from an opening-round four-over, 76, to match the lowest round of the opening 36 holes by shooting six-under, 66, in the afternoon to stand in a four-way tie for third entering the final round.
Teams played the Bayonet Golf Course in the opening round before playing the Black Horse course in the afternoon's second round. Scheduled to begin at 8:00 am Pacific Time on the Bayonet course, Tuesday morning's final round is slightly delayed due to fog. WCU is paired with golfers from UC Irvine and Sacramento State and will begin on holes seven through 10.
Poston (142) moved from a tie for 36th after the opening round into third by trimming 10 strokes off his opening round score. Starting on hole No. 14 on the back nine, Poston was even through his first 10 holes of the opening round. However, bogies on four of the final seven holes left him at four-over, 76.
In the second round - again beginning on the par-4 14th - Poston scored birdie on four of his first eight holes before a bogey on No. 4 moved him to three-under. He closed with a trio of birdies in his final nine to shoot six-under, 66, matching his career-low round shot last fall in WCU's home tournament at the Country Club of Sapphire Valley, the Hummingbird Intercollegiate.
Redshirt senior Kyle Wilson (148) was second for the Catamounts, tied for 23rd after rounds of three-over 75 and one-over, 73, advancing four places after the opening round. Wilson started the tournament strong with two birdies and an Eagle among his first four holes to stand at four-under par. However, a double-bogey on the par-5 No. 1 was followed by six bogies and just one more birdie the final 13 holes to shoot three-over.
Wilson's second round featured five birdies against four bogies and one double-bogey for one-over, 73.
Senior Steven Smith led the Catamounts after the opening round after posting a two-over, 74. After carding four bogies through his first nine holes, Smith rallied with three birdies with just one bogey his final nine for the two-over par opening. His second round featured six bogies against just two pars for the four-over, 76, leaving him tied with eight others for 29th overall at 150.
Rounding out WCU's side through the first 36 holes were junior Greg Bunner, tied for 61st at 155 (78-77) and redshirt sophomore Collin Witiak in a tie for 77th at 162 (81-81). Bunner posted seven bogies and one par in his opening round. Two double bogies added to four bogies in the second round were countered by three birdies to trim one stroke off his first 18 holes to shoot 77. Witiak managed three birdies in his second round, but posted 10 holes of bogey-or-worse to shoot matching nine-over par rounds of 81.
Tournament host St. Mary's (Calif.) leads the 15-team field after shooting rounds of 290 and 285 for a 36-hole score of 575, two strokes ahead of Fresno State (289-288=577). Oregon stands third, eight strokes off the pace at 583 with Kentucky (587) and Santa Clara (588) rounding out the top five.
Fellow Southern Conference member, Samford, is in 12th place after shooting rounds of 304 and 305 for an opening day, 609.
Jonathan De Los Reye of St. Mary's (Calif.) and Sacramento State's Ryan Williams lead the 84-golfer field with matching scores of four-under, 140. The two were tied for fifth place after the opening round by carding even-par, 72, following up those rounds with mirroring four-under, 68, in the second round. The duo enters the final round two strokes ahead of the four-way tie for third place.
Live scoring of Tuesday's final round is available online at www.golfstatresults.com.