MIRAMAR BEACH, F.L.– Georgia State, the defending Sun Belt men’s golf champions opened play on Monday (April 20, 2015) with rounds of 291 and 284 to stand in third-place entering the final round of play. Senior Davin White led the Panthers on day one, shooting rounds of 69 and 75 to stand in a tie for eighth at 2-over par.
The last group of play finished the 36-hole day with basically no light left on the course. After the first day of play was washed out by Mother Nature on Sunday, teams were delayed once again on Monday morning by lightning for an hour.
Georgia State stands at 7-over par, just one stroke behind Troy which is at 6-over for second-place. No. 43 Georgia Southern holds a commanding 20-stroke lead at 14-under par following rounds of 279 and 275. UALR and UT Arlington are tied for fourth five strokes behind the Panthers at 12-over.
“We are disappointed because we hurt ourselves with too many big numbers, especially in the first round,” head coach Joe Inman said. “We made nearly as many birdies as Georgia Southern, but stand 21 strokes back. Our goal for Tuesday will be to go out and play as well as we can and then see what happens.”
The Panthers finished the day with 38 birdies, compared to 42 for the Eagles, however, 12 double bogeys or worse over the 36 holes were too much to overcome.
White opened play with a 2-under 69 with five birdies, before shooting 75 in the afternoon. He stands eight-strokes off the lead.
Following an opening round 6-over 77, freshman Alexander Herrmann rebounded with the Panthers round of the day, shooting a 3-under 68. His second round included seven birdies and a back nine 4-under 32. He is tied for 15th at 3-over par.
He is tied with brother Max Herrmann who shot rounds of 72 and 73 on Monday. His day included 10 birdies as he looks for a career-best finish on Tuesday.
After opening with a 4-over 75, senior Damon Stephenson rebounded with an afternoon even par 71 to stand 4-over and tied for 23rd. His day included seven birdies.
Junior J.J. Grey rounded out the line-up shooting 75-72 to stand tied for 29th at 5-over. He got off to a rough start with a double bogey at the first and bogey at the second, before fighting back the rest of the day.
Georgia Southern owns the top three spots on the individual leaderboard. Kim Koivu shot 69-67 to finish the day at 6-under and own a one-stroke lead entering the final round. Scott Wolfes, ranked No. 50 in the country is second at 5-under par, followed by Andrew Klasing in third at 3-under. Troy’s Jared Bettcher and UL Monroe’s Greg Smail are tied for fourth at 2-under par.
Since 1998, Georgia State has finished in the top three in the conference tournament all but twice with eight titles and six second-place finishes.
Live scoring of the final day of play is available at GolfStat.com.
With a conference championship win, Georgia State will automatically earn a spot into NCAA Regional play which will be played May 14-16 at six national sites. Without a win, the Panthers will have to wait to see if they are selected as an at-large team. The NCAA championship is scheduled for May 29-June 1 at The Concession Golf Club in Bradenton, F.L.