HICKORY, N.C. – With Maeve Cummins moving into a tie for first, No. 24/25 Carson-Newman fired eight-shots lower in the second round to hold down fourth-place with a +38 score through two rounds at the South Atlantic Conference Championship on Monday at the Lake Hickory Country Club.
The Eagles were 15-over on the day with a 303 total, the eighth-lowest round of the season. Of the team, three players shot lower in the second round. The team now holds a 614 total through 36-holes, five shots out of the lead heading into Tuesday at 38-over.
C-N was the best par-3 shooting team on the day with a 3.05 clip, moving it to second for the tournament at an eight-over average of 3.20.
"To really make a jump, we needed three players to do what they're capable of doing," Carson-Newman coach Suzanne Strudwick said. "We had that, so now we just need all five of the team members to do the same tomorrow to make a difference.
"It was a tough day, the winds were swirling. This is a tough course for us so I'm still pleased with how we played. The teams in the lead are the ones who have played here before and know this course. Overall, I knew we would improve today so I am hoping we can keep doing that so tomorrow's round is even better and gets us even closer to the top. That is all we want to do – add some pressure to the leaders."
One of the Eagles to make an improvement on Monday was Maeve Cummins (Waringstown, Northern Ireland), help her to hold a share of the top spot on the player board. She was three-shots better on Monday with an even round of 72, moving her two-round total to 147 and leaving her. The freshman was on par for all but one hole in the front nine, carding a bogey on the par-4 sixth-hole to sit at one-over heading into the turn. After that, she used back-to-back birdies and bogey on hole-18 to sit even.
Cummins is tied for second on Par-5 scoring with a 4.75 clip, sitting at one-under for such holes. She has shot for par the most of anyone in the tournament at 28 holes.
Reagan Kinnie (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) used a six-shot improvement to move into a tie for ninth-place with a one-over day on Monday. She had the most substantial jump from the first to second round among her teammates. Kinnie shot three bogeys exclusively on par-four holes, adding two birdies to her round. Through the front nine, she was on par for all but one hole, going one-over on the par-4 third hole.
The junior holds a 152 heading into the final round. She was also named an All-SAC Honorable Mention selection by the League office on Monday after holding a 76.8 scoring average through 20 rounds of play in the regular season.
Jayla Sims (Soddy Daisy, Tenn.) shaved two strokes off her opening round score to shoot for a 77 on Monday, sharing 18th on the leaderboard. She carded a birdie on the par-5 fourth-hole, the only hole she shot in the red for on the day. She shot for bogey on six holes with a birdie on the par-5 eighth. She is 12-over for the event with a 156.
Anna Davenport (Roswell, Ga.), the only individual in the entire tournament, moved down to 28th on an eight-over day, three shots higher than her opening round score. Her 80 in the second round now puts her at 13-over with a 157. She was three-over heading into the turn on three bogeys. She pieced together a four-hole sequence of three bogeys in-a-row with a bogey.
Two shots behind Davenport is Taylor Hayes (Lake Ozark, Mo.), in a tie for 30th at 15-over with a 159 total. She was three shots higher on Monday thanks to a triple bogey and six additional bogeys.
The senior is now tied for second in the field for par-3 scoring with a one-under average at 2.75.
Rachel Watts (Newport, Tenn.) was three shots higher in the second round, sliding down to 34-place with an 82. She carded nine bogeys and a triple on the par-4 12th-hole with a pair of birdies to sit at 10-over for the day. She is 17-over for the tournament at 161.
The junior tied for the top spot on par-3 scoring in the round with a one-under average at 2.75.
Tied with Cummins at the top of the player's table is Wingate's Diana McDonald after shooting a 75 on Monday. Lenoir-Rhyne's Megan Robb sits at third heading into the final round, one shot behind the top duo.
Anderson jumped into the lead on Monday with a 13-shot improvement to hold a 33-over total of 609. Wingate and Lenoir-Rhyne are tied for second, two shots out of the lead.
One final round remains before a conference champion is crowned by the end of Tuesday. The Orange and Blue is set to begin its round at 8:00 a.m. with Watts being the first Eagle to hit the links. Live scoring will once again be available for the round.