LSU senior John Peterson had a round to remember on Wednesday. Peterson, a Fort Worth, Texas, native, bolted into the individual lead with a Karsten Creek course record 7-under 65. Peterson, who started the day tied for 47th after a 74 in Tuesday’s first round, had just one bogey – the par-5 first – with six birdies and an eagle.
|THE PRESSURE IS ON|
|Talk about a restless night. The first goal for 30 men’s golf teams is to finish among the top 8 after 54 holes of stroke play. Thursday marks the final 18 of those 54 holes. Georgia Tech and UCLA, the only teams under par, appear to be safe. The threesome of Illinois, Georgia and Alabama also have the inside track at the top eight. But after that is anybody’s guess. Nine teams will tee it up on Thursday within 11 shots of sixth place Oklahoma State.|
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“Today, I told myself ‘Tomorrow is going to be tough,” said Peterson. “If you’re going to shoot a low number, you have to do it today because tomorrow you’re going to be hanging on, trying to make birdies on par-5s and not really any other holes, unless you just happen to feel good about one.’ Today definitely had to go low, today or yesterday, and that’s why I felt so bad shooting 42 because, ‘God, I’m in 100th place and we’ve only played nine holes. I’ve got to dig myself out somehow.’”
Since playing his first nine holes in 6-over Peterson is 11-under with 11 birdies and an eagle.
Peterson broke a course record of 66 set by former OSU golfer and current PGA Tour star Hunter Mahan at the 2002 PING/Golfweek Preview in 2002 and Kansas’ Andy Stewart at an NCAA Regional in 2001.
In the week prior to this week’s championships, former Cowboy and current touring pro Rickie Fowler wanted to “post a number.” His best round was 67.
By the Numbers
Ask anybody who lives in Oklahoma and they will tell you the wind has blown every day for a month. The last two have provided little. A course record was recorded but there have still been plenty of big numbers.
On Tuesday Karsten Creek provided a scoring average of 4-over 76.
The toughest hole on the course in the first round? The par-4 fifth saw players average .63 over par. There were 82 combined bogeys, double bogeys and others with just nine birdies.
No. 17 – without the wind – was the third toughest hole on Tuesday. The par-5 18th played the easiest with six eagles, 63 birdies and only 18 bogeys. The par-5 first has gave 11 eagles.
Texas A&M’s John Hurley aced the 175-yard par-3 seventh hole on Wednesday morning. Hurley, a senior from Nebraska, was 3-over at the time. Hurley, who shot 76 on Tuesday, was 6-over on the back nine and carded an 81. The ace was the highlight of an otherwise tough day at the yard for the Aggies, who shot 301.
One day to the next
Twenty-nine of the 156 players shot 80 or above in Tuesday’s first round. A few turned it around on Day 2.
Georgia’s Brydon MacPherson shot 82 in Round 1. He shot 71 a day later. Henrik Norlander of Augusta State opened with 80 but shot 69 on Day 2. Another Jaguar, Ollie Bengtsson, shaved 11 shots off his first-day 86.
Iowa’s Barrett Kelpin followed up an 81 with a 73. Michigan’s Jack Schultz went from 84 to 74.
Been there, done that
Since the inception of match play into the NCAA Championships two seasons ago, only two teams have qualified for the final eight twice, Oklahoma State and Washington. The Huskies are not in attendance this week. Fourteen programs have advanced to match Play with the Pac-10 Conference with the most representatives at five.
Of the top eight after two days, four teams have been there before – Georgia Tech, Georgia, Oklahoma State and Augusta State.