MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. – Tom Forster (Oundle, England) moved up 11 spots into a tie for sixth while the Carson-Newman men's golf team slipped to 11th on Tuesday at the NCAA Division II Men's Golf Championships South/Southeast Regional at The Shoals Golf Club in Muscle Shoals, Ala.
"Today was a bit disappointing," coach Randy Wylie said. "We had a chance to move up and weren't able to take advantage of it. Tom played well up until the last hole, when he had a double bogey. We had to count an 80, which is something that shouldn't happen. We're nine shots back heading into the final day, which is not insurmountable, we just need to play really well tomorrow."
Forster's day began on the back nine, as it did for all his teammates, and he started off with a pair of birdies. The freshman then reeled off 10 consecutive pars, a streak that lasted until Forster birdied the fourth. He followed by taking another stroke off his score on the fifth and added his fifth birdie of the round on eighth. The only blemish on his scorecard was a double bogey on the ninth. His three-under 69 was one of just 10 scores under 70 on Tuesday. Through two days, he is three-under.
"He's playing very well," said Wylie. "He's played well all week and all year. He's disappointed with his last hole, but he and I expect him to get back on track tomorrow."
Jake Headrick had an up-and-down day on the course that ended with him tied for 49th. He bogeyed his first hole of the day and added a double on 14th, but birdied the 15th to finish the first half of his round two-over. Following another double bogey on the second, Headrick rebounded with birdies on the sixth and seventh before closing with bogey on the ninth. For the day, the Maryville, Tenn. native put up a three-over 75 and is six-over for the event.
One of the 11 student-athletes also at six-over is Anthony Marcinelli (Knoxville, Tenn.), who jumped up 17 spots on the leaderboard. He completed the back nine with an even score, recording just one bogey and one birdie in doing so. His consistent play continued after the turn, with Marcinelli birdieing the second and bogeying the third and sixth to enter the clubhouse with a one-over 73.
It was a difficult day on the links for Dalton Reese (Warrenton, Ga.), who fell from 38th in a tie for 75th after an eight-over 80. Brady Childers (Granite Falls, N.C.) was 10-over for the second consecutive day and is in 106th.
The Eagles have an overall team score of 19-over after shooting 297 during round two, one stroke better than their day one mark. The West Florida Argonauts, who entered the regional as the top-ranked club in the country, have run away with the team lead, as they are 11-under and eight strokes up on second place and No. 2 Lynn University. The Argos shot a nine-under 279 to leapfrog the Knights, who were one-over on Tuesday. Fifth-ranked Florida Southern sits in third, 11 shots back and No. 7 Florida Tech moved into fourth, thanks to a five-under 283 on day two. The fifth spot belongs to USC-Aiken.
One of the biggest reasons for West Florida's dominance has been the play of their junior golfer, Chandler Blanchet, who owns first place at -10 with John Van Der Laan of Florida Southern two shots behind. Richard Mansell of Nova Southeastern is seven-under and in third.
Just 18 holes remain in Muscle Shoals as the Eagles try to punch their ticket for the NCAA Championships in Kissimmee, Fla. After Wednesday's final putt, visit cneagles.com for results and a recap.