MCKINNEY, Texas – Antonio Costa led Central Arkansas into first place Tuesday after the first two rounds of the 2012 Southland Conference Men’s Golf Championship at Stonebridge Ranch Country Club.
Costa, a senior from Valdivia, Chile, shot a 1-under par 71 to go with his even-par round on Monday and is in first place overall at 143. He has a two-stroke lead on Stephen F. Austin junior Mitchell McLeroy, who fired a 3-over par 75 after opening with a 2-under par 70 in the opening round.
Golfers battled through increasing wind throughout the round and seven managed to stay within five shots of Costa heading into Wednesday’s final round at the 72-par, 7,346-yard Pete Dye Signature Course.
McLeroy has a two-round score of 145 and is followed by UT Arlington senior Jamey Taylor and Lamar senior M.J. Daffue, who shot a 2-over par 146 in two rounds. UTSA sophomore Ryan Werre joined Costa with Tuesday’s only sub-par rounds with his 1-under par 71. His two-day total of 148 has him tied with Sam Houston State senior Garrett Driver and Central Arkansas junior Austen Moix of Conway in fifth place.
Central Arkansas freshman Pep Angles is tied for 14th (75-76–151) while senior Josh Sims is tied for 17th (74-78–152). Freshman David Morago is tied for 20th (79-75–154).
With two players in the top five and all five players in the top 20, the Bears moved from second place after the first round into first after the second round. UCA was 3-over par (291) through the opening 18 holes and trailed Lamar by three strokes, but its team score of 300 took it to 15-over 591, seven strokes better than the Cardinals, who have a two-round total of 598.
The top four teams are separated by just 10 strokes entering the final day. UT Arlington is third (600) while Stephen F. Austin is fourth (601). Texas State is fifth (608) and is followed by Southeastern Louisiana (614), Sam Houston State (615), UTSA (622), Nicholls State (629) and McNeese State (630).
Central Arkansas is in contention for its first Southland Conference title in just its second year as a full conference member. The winner of the tournament will gain the league’s automatic bid into one of six NCAA regionals May 17-19.
The final round begins Wednesday morning.
University of Central Arkansas’ Julia Roth was named a second-team All-Southland Conference selection for the second consecutive year on Monday.
Roth, a junior from Karlskrona, Sweden, helped UCA to a fourth-place tie in the recent Southland Conference Championships. For the season, Roth averaged 75.7 strokes per round over 24 rounds. She tied for second at the Monterey Bay Invitational at Del Monte Golf Course in March for her season-best individual finish.
Roth had three Top 10 finishes and a low round of 70 on two separate occasions this season.
Hendrix keeper gets SCAC honor
Hendrix College senior goalkeeper Keith Clemens has been named the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Men’s Lacrosse Defensive Player of the Week.
The Hanson, Mass., native recorded 17 saves with a 3.00 goals against average as the Warriors picked up a pair of road victories over the weekend.
Clemens tied the school record for fewest goals allowed in Friday’s 19-1 win at Millsaps, while coming up with seven saves. Clemens stopped 10 shots in Sunday’s 9-5 victory over Rhodes in the final game of his career.
In his four-year career, Clemens recorded 709 saves.