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Ross Bell extends Mississippi State Amateur Lead
Mississippi State redshirt junior Ross Bell <br>(Mississippi State Athletics)
Mississippi State redshirt junior Ross Bell
(Mississippi State Athletics)

Update 6/3: After two rounds of great play at Canebrake Country Club, the 60 players that made the cut were never able to fully get out of the gates on Saturday. After more than six hours of delays, the golfers were finally able to head out onto the course, but unfortunately weather proved to be a problem again as the lead groups were only able to make it through four holes before play was officially called for the remainder of the day. The decision was also made for the championship to be reduced to a 54-hole format, with the third round resuming at 9am Sunday morning.

HATTIESBURG, MS (June 2, 2017) - With a second round 4-under 67 Ross Bell has moved to 12-under and extended his Mississippi State Amateur advantage. Following a near flawless 8-under 63 in the first round Canebrake Country Club, Bell worked on extending his lead to three-strokes on Friday by birdieing three-times, eagling once and bogeying once.

Teeing off on No. 10 Bell got off to a slow start and following his lone bogey of the round on the 18th he was 1-over for the day. However, on the second nine the cobwebs were quickly whisked away.

After a par on No. 1 Bell caught fire with an eagle on the par-5 2nd and then birdies on each of the next three holes before playing par golf to the house. From Nos. 2-5 Bell was 5-under.

Through two rounds Bell, the Mississippi State redshirt junior to be, has played the front nine in 12-under.

Benjamin Nelson will begin the third round in second place at 9-under, Joel Myrick is fourth at 8-under while Isaiah Jackson and Wilson Furr are tied for fourth at 6-under

ROUND ONE RECAP

On a day where red figures were prevalent nobody was better on Thursday at the Mississippi State Amateur then Mississippi State redshirt-junior-to-be Ross Bell.

Playing at Canebrake Country Club, Bell fired an 8-under 63 and he will carry a slim one shot lead into Friday's second round.

Bell didn't waste anytime on Thursday getting his round going as he birdied his first three holes and seven overall, on a flawless front side to turn in 7-under 29. Early on the backside it appeared as if Bell, who had a career high T5 showing at the Mountaineer Intercollegiate this past season, was going to go even lower as he eagled the par-5 13th to reach 9-under.

However, his run came to end with a bogey one hole later and then from there it was par golf to the house.

Joel Myrick will begin day two in second place following his 7-under 64. Like Bell, Myrick birdied seven holes on the front nine to turn in 7-under 29.

Dr. Stewart Horsley and Benjamin Nelson are one shot further back in third at 6-under while Jake Thomas Crosson, Isaiah Jackson and Grant Motter are tied for fifth at 5-under.

In all, 29 players broke par on the day and 20 broke 70.

New for the Mississippi State Amateur in 2017, the winner will receive an exemption to the PGA Tour's 2017 Sanderson Farms Championship.

“This is an exciting development for our state’s amateurs to be able to compete for the chance of playing in a PGA TOUR event,” said Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., CEO and Chairman of the Board of Sanderson Farms. “We are thrilled to provide an opportunity for the State Amateur champion to join the Sanderson Farms Championship field and support the Mississippi Golf Association at the same time,” said Steve Jent, executive director of the Sanderson Farms Championship.

Of Note: Defending champion and recently retired Mississippi State head coach Clay Homan is not in the field this week. Homan won last week's Lupton Invitational.



ABOUT THE Mississippi State Amateur

Format: The tournament is scheduled for 72 holes of stroke play with a cut to the low 60(+ties) after 36 holes of play. Field size is limited to 120 players. Qualifiers will be held for the State Amateur, including an Open Qualifier, the week of the event. Each is scheduled for 18 holes of stroke play. The number of players to advance will be determined by the number of entries for each qualifier and the number available in the field after the exempt players have reserved their place. The same percentage from each qualifier will advance to the championship.

Eligibility: The Amateur Championship is open to male amateurs who are bona fide residents of the state of Mississippi for at least 60 days prior to the first round of the tournament. Participants must conform with the USGA Rules of Amateur Status. All participants in Mississippi Golf Association State Championships are required to have an active GHIN Handicap through a USGA Licensed Mississippi Club.

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