Tigers Move to 4th at NCAA East Regional

The Auburn men's golf team moves up the leaderboard in the second round of the NCAA East Regional.

Greensboro, N.C.-- After finishing the first round in eighth place, the Auburn men's golf team improved its odds of qualifying for the NCAA Championships with a four-over second-round score of 292, placing the Tigers in a tie for fourth place with a two-day total of 588 in the 14-team field in the NCAA East Regional on the East Course at the Grandover Resort in Greensboro, N.C.

The top five teams from the regional advance to the NCAA Championships at the Riviera County Club in Los Angeles.

Liberty University holds a six-stroke lead at 576, with SMU in second at 582 and Florida third with 586. The Tigers are tied with Lamar University at 588. Only four shots separate the fourth place Tigers and ninth place Duke.

Two holes stymied what would have been a under-par round for Auburn. The Tigers carded two double-bogies and a bogey on the third hole and closed out the second round with three bogies on the ninth. The Tigers were four-under-par on the other 16 holes for the day.

All-American Blayne Barber led the way for Auburn, carding a four-under-par 68 for the second round. The junior played bogey-free golf Friday while scoring four birdies for the round. Barber's stellar round vaults him from 15th to 4th on the individual leaderboard, four shots behind SMU's Matt Schovee, who is seven-under-par for the tournament.

"Today was a good day as we moved up the leaderboard as a team, which is big," said Barber. "It was tough out there, but I think we hung in there pretty well. We are in a good position to do what we need to do tomorrow and try to win a golf tournament."

Dominic Bozzelli redeemed himself for a four-over-par first round with a two-under 70 for the second round. The junior was two under at the turn and canceled out three bogies with three birdies to finish even on the closing nine holes. Bozzelli moved from 39th to a tie for 12th place on the individual leaderboard.

"Blayne and Dominic played very, very well with a 68 and a 70," said Auburn head coach Nick Clinard. "We just didn't ham and egg it again today. We counted a 78 and a 76 today and counted a 76 yesterday as well. We have our work cut out for us tomorrow. We are looking forward to it and will be ready to go."

Niclas Carlsson struggled at times with two double-bogies for the day, finishing with a four-over 76 for the round.

For the second-straight day, senior Will McCurdy had a frustrating round, carding a six-over 78 on Friday after shooting four-over in the first round.

Michael Johnson's seven-over-par 79 on Friday was dropped and did not count toward the team's second-round tally.

Auburn will tee off on the first hole Saturday at 6:55 a.m. CST for third-round play alongside Lamar and Texas Tech.

NCAA East Regional Leaderboard


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