DENVER – Saint Leo University’s colors are green and gold. After Wednesday’s second round at the NCAA Division II Men’s Golf Championships, they may want to consider adding red.
The Lions extended their team lead in the tournament with an impressive -15 day, smashing the NCAA Division II Championships two-day record at -25 (551) as bright blue skies and warmer temperatures sent scores plummeting at Green Valley Ranch.
Freshman Hugo Bernard continued to attack the course, extending his individual lead to four strokes at -13 after a round of 66. The Canadian birdied all four par-5s for the second straight day to lead teammate and countryman Joey Savoie, who carded 66 for second place at -9.
MORE: Full Men's leaderboard
Saint Leo’s performance overshadowed impressive outings by Chico State and Barry, who are second and third, respectively. Chico State maintained its hold on second with an eight-under 280 (-14), while Barry was the big mover of the morning rounds with a -11 277 keyed by Nico Cavero’s 65, which was the low round of the day.
Limestone’s Griffin Brown is third overnight after a five-under 67, placing him five shots off the lead at -8. Niclas Weiland (Barry) is a shot back at -7, tied with Nova Southeastern’s Richard Mansell for fourth.
“He’s one of my good friends, it’s pretty fun. We’re just going to enjoy it.” – Hugo Bernard on he and teammate Joey Savoie competing for the individual title.
“This golf course you can play a lot of different ways. We’re playing it aggressively, it fits the way we play golf because there’s a lot of risk and reward. It looks good to all of our eyes.” – Saint Leo head coach Chris Greenwood on his team’s strategy this week
“There are some tricky pins out there, but if you hit the right shot with the right yardage you can get to them. The greens are running pretty smooth and there’s no excuse not to make a putt.” Barry head coach Jimmy Stobs on the course setup. His Bucs were the morning’s big movers at -11 to move into third.
- The previous Championships two-round team record was -11 (565) set by Florida Southern in 1999. Bernard bested Central Oklahoma’s Josh Creel for the two-day individual record at -12, three strokes lower relative to par and four strokes under Creel’s 135.
- Thursday’s third round will determine the weekend’s eight participants in medal match play for the team title. Behind Saint Leo, Chico State, and Barry, Florida Southern, Central Oklahoma, Lynn, Wilmington (Del.), and Cal Baptist own the top eight spots.
- In the individual standings, four of the top five are foreigners, with Limestone’s Griffin Brown the lone American. Saint Leo’s Hugo Bernard and Joey Savoie are from Quebec, Barry’s Niclas Weiland hails from Sweden, and Nova Southeastern’s Richard Mansell is English.
- The shot of the day belonged to Florida Southern’s Jimmy Jones, who came within a foot of a double eagle on the 577-yard second. Jones hit a 6-iron on his approach to earn the tap-in. There were seven eagles in all on Wednesday after only one in the first round.
- Barry’s Nico Cavero owned the day’s low round at 65, tying him for the tournament-low with Bernard’s first round. Cavero vaulted up 38 spots to tie for 10th.
- With the improved weather, the average score dropped nearly two strokes from Tuesday, from 74.4 to 72.8.
Team Standings (Top 10)
1. Saint Leo, -25 (551)
2. Chico State, -14 (562)
3. Barry, -11 (565)
4. Florida Southern, -8 (568)
5. Central Oklahoma, -6 (570)
6. Lynn, -4 (572)
7. Wilmington, -1 (575)
8. Cal Baptist, +3 (579)
Individual Standings (Top 10)
1. Hugo Bernard, Saint Leo, -13 (65-66—131)
2. Joey Savoie, Saint Leo, -9 (69-66—135)
3. Griffin Brown, Limestone, -8 (69-67—136)
t4. Niclas Weiland, Barry, -7 (69-68—137)
t4. Richard Mansell, Nova Southeastern, -7 (69-68—137)
t6. Andreas Lunding, Wilmington, -6 (70-68—138)
t6. John Coultas, Florida Southern, -6 (70-68—138)
t6. Matt Hutchins, Chico State, -6 (68-70—138)
t6. Calum Hill, Western New Mexico, -6 (69-69—138)
Round 2 Low Rounds (Par 72)
Nico Cavaro (Barry), 65
Hugo Bernard (Saint Leo), 66
Joey Savoie (Saint Leo), 66
Griffin Brown (Limestone), 67