Nathan Jeansonne led LSU to the lead on Thursday with a 4-under 66
(LSU Athletics Photo)
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, GA (April 26, 2018) - LSU turned in the round of the tournament to take over the lead after 36-holes at the SEC Championship. The Tigers, ranked 10th in the nation, carded a 4-under tally on Thursday at Sea Island Golf Club's Seaside Course to move to 3-under for the tournament and take a two-stroke lead over No. 4 Vanderbilt (-1), the defending champion.
LSU will now look to close out the stroke play portion of the SEC Championship on a high Friday as they look to wrap up the top-seed for match play beginning Saturday.
Through two rounds three members of the LSU lineup are in the top-15 including; first round leader Luis Gagne (T2; -4), Nathan Jeansonne (T2; -4) and Jacob Bergeron (T13; +1).
In all eight teams will advance to match play with the quarterfinals and semifinals to be played Saturday, followed by the finals on Sunday. Along with LSU and Vanderbilt the top-8 includes No. 6 Alabama (+3), Ole Miss (+4), No. 8 Auburn (+6), No. 21 Kentucky (+9), Tennessee (+10) and No. 9 Florida (+11).
Among the teams currently on the outside looking in are No. 2 Texas A&M (+13) and No. 17 Arkansas (+14).
The medalist race has been taken over by Ole Miss' Cecil Wegener who fired the round of the tournament so far in the form a 5-under 65. Beginning the day four off the pace Wegener has moved one ahead and on Friday he will have a chance to win the individual title.
Wegener did most of his heavy lifting on the back nine, after playing the front nine in bogey-free 1-under 34 he caught fire during the second nine carding a 4-under 31. Wegener birdied Nos. 12-15 in succession and then the 17th as well before dropping a shot with his only bogey of the day on the 18th.
Along with LSU teammates Gagne and Jeansonne, Vanderbilt's Theo Humphrey and Wilson Furr of Alabama are sharing second at 4-under. Six other players are in red figures and will begin the final round within four shots of the lead.
And, as it turns out, Wegener and Furr (despite playing for different teams) are best buddies and played out of the same country club their whole lives in Jackson, MS.
Defending NCAA champion Braden Thornberry of Ole Miss struggled again carding a 2-over 72 that leaves him 5-over and in a share of 38th.
ROUND ONE RECAP
Defending SEC Champions Vanderbilt shot right back to the top of the leaderboard in the first round on Wednesday after an opening day 4-under team tally. A year ago Vanderbilt won the title by finishing as the low team in stroke play to earn the top-seed and then continued to roll in the match play portion as the Commodores won their first ever conference title.
No. 4 Vanderbilt was paced on day one at Sea Island Golf Club's Seaside Course by a trio of players in the top-10; Theo Humphrey (T3; -2), Will Gordon (T3; -2) and John Augenstein (T8; -1).
Sitting in second place are Tennessee and No. 8 Auburn at even-par, No. 10 LSU is third at 1-over with 3-over No. 6 Alabama in fifth. Overall the top eight teams make it out of the 54-hole stroke play version of the championship and currently the 6-8 spots are being held by No. 21 Kentucky at 6-over, Missouri at 7-over and South Carolina at 8-over.
No. 9 Florida (+13) tied for 12th and No. 2 Texas A&M (+16) in last place have some ground to make up over the next two days if they hope to qualify for match play which begins Saturday with the quarterfinals and semifinals before wrapping up on Sunday with the title match.
Leading the medalist chase with two rounds remaining is Luis Gagne of LSU at 4-under. Gagne carded a 4-under 66 that was comprised of six birdies and only two bogeys. Teeing of on No. 10 Gagne jump started his day with four birdies between Nos. 12 -16.
Tennessee's Lorenzo Scalise is second at 3-under with five others 2-under sharing third. Defending NCAA champion Braden Thornberry of Ole Miss struggled on Wednesday and he is 3-over which leaves him tied for 36th.
ABOUT THE SEC Championship
54-hole stroke play tournament crowns an individual
champion, then eight teams advance to match play
determine the SEC team champion.
View Complete Tournament Information