AUSTIN – Despite playing one shot better on Tuesday, the Sam Houston men’s golf team dropped one spot in the standings at the Austin Regional of the NCAA Golf Championships.
The Kats fired a 302 and currently sit in 12th place with one round to play. The top five teams advance to the NCAA Championships in Arkansas.
“We were just missing to the wrong side of the holes, and on this course you can’t do that,” said head coach Brandt Kieschnick. “I liked our approach and mindset, the shots just haven’t been there for us.”
Once again the Bearkats got off to a good start, beginning the day on No. 10. They combined for five birdies on the first five holes and after nine, they were 6-over for the day. But once again, they had their struggles on holes 1-9. They managed just three birdies on their final nine holes and were 11-over, including posting six double bogeys and one triple.
“The goal for us now is to refocus and make the most of our final round,” Kieschnick said. “I want to guys to go out and be loose and see if we can pass some people on the leader board.”
The low round of the day for the Kats was a 74 by William Holcomb. After a bogey on No. 10 to start, Holcomb picked up birdies on Nos. 13, 14 and 17 and made the turn at even par. He opened his back nine with four straight pars, before a double bogey, bogey, birdie, bogey stretch. He closed with a par on No. 9 and is currently in a tie for 39th.
Levi Valadez was only Bearkat who seemed to have holes 1-9 figured out on Tuesday. He had eight straight pars after making the turn, only dropping a stroke on his last hole. He finished the day with a 75, improving by five strokes from Monday’s round.
Also with a big improvement on Tuesday was freshman Jack Randle. He was six shots better on Tuesday, shooting a 76. Randle got off to a good start, playing the first four holes at 1-under after a birdie on No. 11. He made the turn at 3-over par and then birdied No. 1. He then closed with four straight pars to close out the day.
Noah Steele, who was 3-over for the tournament heading into the day, shot a 77 on Tuesday and is two shots back of Holcomb on the leaderboard. He made the turn at 1-ver, with a birdie on No. 13.
Luis Carrera seemed to be on his way to another good day. After leading the Kats on Monday, the freshman had back-to-back birdies on Nos. 17 and 18 to make the turn at 2-over par. But he struggled on his final nine holes and finished the day with an 82.
The Kats will close out the Regional on Wednesday, teeing off at 8:55 a.m., playing with UMKC and St. Mary’s.