MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. (May 18, 2011) -- Brushing aside a rough first round, Lynn University’s Paul McPhee had the biggest turnaround of the 2011 NCAA Division II Men’s Golf Championship in helping the Fighting Knights extend their lead.
McPhee improved 13 strokes from Monday's opening round to shoot a one-under par 71 on the 7,150-yard, par 72 Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail at the Shoals Fighting Jones Golf Course.
“I didn’t have the best of days yesterday,” said McPhee, “so I made some minor adjustments in my swing at the range and they really paid off. This was a big boost for me and the team, so hopefully we can keep this momentum heading into the third round.”
McPhee's round opened with a bogey, but Lynn's freshman from Perth, Scotland rallied to birdie two of the next four holes before heading into the turn at even par. McPhee sank another birdie on his 10th hole and then drained yet another birdie four holes later to move to two-under. A bogey on the next hole pushed him back to one under and he finished out play with three consecutive pars.
Ricardo Gouveia and Daniel Young each fired rounds of 73 for the Fighting Knights and are both within the top 10. Gouveia is tied for fourth while Young is tied for sixth. Joining them in the top 10 is Pepito Joia, who shot a 74 and is tied for eighth individually.
In addition to McPhee’s big day on the links, Roberto Francioni was markedly improved. Francioni made strides to the tune of a 75, improving six strokes from round one.
Lynn (582) led the field of 20 teams once again, firing 291 as a team. The Knights hold a five-stroke lead over CSU-Monterey Bay (587) and 10-shots ahead of Abilene Christian (592), both of which will be paired with LU on Wednesday. The remaining teams in the top eight are: Central Missouri (593), Fort Lewis (597), Central Oklahoma (599), Indiana University of Pa. (601) and Hawaii-Hilo (602).
For the first time in the 48-year history of the tournament, the winner will be determined in Match Play. After stroke-play rounds end Wednesday, the final eight teams will be paired against each other (1 vs. 8, 2 vs. 7, 3 vs. 6, 4 vs. 5) for a quarterfinal round Thursday morning. The final four remaining teams will then play Thursday afternoon with the two remaining teams will meet in the Championship Final on Friday.
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