Nashville, Tenn. – The Tennessee State men’s golf team played in the rain on day one of the 2015 Big Blue Intercollegiate. The day opened with cloudy skies, but the rains came with two holes to play in the first round. The second round started as the down pour picked up and continued through the first seven holes and started to ease up until it stopped with four holes to play.
Despite the conditions, individuals and teams attacked the Par-72, 7,157 yard President's Reserve Course at Hermitage Golf Club. Belmont’s Ashton Van Horn turned in a pair of 65’s and leads the field of 80 at 14-under. Van Horn and his teammates own a commanding 11-stroke lead as they tallied a 22-under, 554 (275-279).
The Tigers sat in 11th after the first round, but started to make a move in the second and climbed to 10th in the field of 13. TSU will enter the final round six strokes behind Wisconsin-Green Bay and eight behind UT Martin.
Freshmen Jermey Fultz and Andy Stout paced the way for TSU as they carded a 1-over, 73, in each round. The duo is tied for 29th, only four strokes outside of the top 10.
Senior Matt Campbell (76-71=147) was the spark for the Tigers in the afternoon session, as he entered the clubhouse with a 1-under, 71, after a 4-over performance on Monday morning. Campbell notched seven birdies on the day, three in the first and four in the second.
Fultz (73-73=146) used consistent play over both rounds as he hit 14 greens over the first 18 holes and 11 during the final round of the day. The Knoxville native dropped four birdies in the morning and two in the afternoon.
Stout (73-73=146) took advantage of the eight par-5’s on the day, as he played the holes at 2-under. The scoring was the fourth best on day one.
James Stepp (74-76=150) scored in both rounds for the Tigers on the power of his play on the eight par-3’s. Stepp played the holes at Even Par, with only six other golfers bettering his performance.
The Tigers used the first round score of sophomore Todd McGill (76-79=155) who carded a 4-over.
Blake Burgett (74-77=151) and Dallas Hill (78-79=157) played the BBI as individuals. Burgett recorded the sixth most birdies on the day with seven, while Hill highlighted the day with a sensational putt. The senior landed on the fringe short of the green on the par-3, 12th. Hill rolled his putt 65 feet dropping to the left to drain his birdie.
The final round of the Big Blue Intercollegiate will begin with a shot gun start at 8:00am at the Hermitage Golf Course.