AUGUSTA, Ga. –
Augusta State combined for an even-par 576 Saturday and grabbed a
two-stroke lead over Texas in the first two rounds of the Insperity
Augusta State Invitational at Forest Hills Golf Club.
The Jaguars, who are seeking their third tournament title
of the season, are five shots in front of Georgia and seven shots clear of Clemson and South Carolina who are tied for fourth
the first round Saturday morning, the Jags fired their
lowest round of the season in relation to par with a 5-under 283.
Sparked by a pair of season-low, 4-under 68's from senior Derek Chang
and sophomore Robin Petersson, ASU grabbed a three-stroke lead over
South Carolina. Tennessee and Clemson were third and
fourth after the first round, while Georgia, Baylor and Virginia Tech
were all tied for fifth. Texas bounced back with the afternoon's best
score, a 6-under 282, and tallied eight birdies over its last four holes
to pull ahead of Georgia.
home-course advantage is huge, said ASU head
coach Kevin McPherson. "These guys have played this course over 100
times and knowing how the golf course is going to be set up tomorrow
will be a big advantage for us. There are some really good teams that
are here, but on this course I feel like we're the
best team in the field."
players are tied for the individual lead. Augusta
State's Derek Chang and Robin Petersson, South Carolina freshman Matt
NeSmith and Central Florida's Greg Eason all registered two-round totals
of 4-under 140. Petersson and South Carolina freshman Matt NeSmith each
rolled in 10 birdies over their 36 holes on
the day. NeSmith fired a 5-under 67, the low round of the morning, and
added a 1-over 73 in the afternoon. Petersson birdied two holes down the
stretch for an even-par 72 in the afternoon.
felt good and very relaxed. I played this tournament
last year so I know what it is with all the fans out there and I was
just thinking like it was a practice round," said Petersson, a sophomore
from Landskrona, Sweden. "I've played Forest Hills so many times that I
was fortunate enough to make some long putts
A senior from Alpharetta, Ga., Chang carded eight birdies
on the day, including three over his final six holes to battle back for an even-par 72 in the afternoon round.
short game was really good today, but I really didn't
it that well and wasn't ever that comfortable with my swing out there,"
Chang said. "Inside 100 yards and inside the greens I was able to save a
lot of shots. I just have to take my mind off it and try to get some
sleep for tomorrow. That's really all you can
do. These 36-hole days are pretty grueling mentally, and rest is really
(68-72) and Chang (68-72) are pacing ASU, while
Alex Wennstam booked a pair of 2-over 74's and is tied for 28th
alongside teammate Cody Shafer (73-75). Freshman Maverick Antcliff
(74-76) is tied for 38th at 6-over 150.
tournament schedule features an 8:30 a.m., start
off the No. 1 tee, with play at the 10th tee getting underway on the
10th tee at 8:35 a.m., on the par-72, 7,142-yard Forest Hills layout.
will be paired with Texas and Georgia in the final
groups off of the first tee. Antcliff will lead off for ASU at 10:10,
followed by Shafer at 10:20, Wennstam at 10:30 and Chang at 10:40, with
Petersson anchoring the lineup at 10:50.
two-day, 54-hole event once again features one of
the top fields of any men's intercollegiate tournament in the country.
Of the 15 teams in the field, 13 are ranked in the top 50, including the
fourth-ranked team and defending IASI champion Texas. The 2013
tournament will mark
the 35th edition of the event and the ninth year of Insperity (formerly Administaff) serving as title sponsor of the tourney.
field includes ASU, No. 40 Baylor, No. 39 Central
Florida, No. 28 Clemson, No. 47 Coastal Carolina, No. 14 Georgia, No. 25
Houston, No. 24 Illinois, Purdue, No. 16 SMU, No. 35 South Carolina,
No. 23 Tennessee, No. 4 Texas, No. 3 USC Aiken and No. 37 Virginia Tech.
Longhorns edged Augusta State in a two-hole playoff
in 2012 to capture the team title. Texas and ASU both fired a 26-under
838, the third-lowest total in tournament history. TCU freshman Julien
Brun bested Dylan Fritelli of Texas by a single stroke to earn medalist
honors. ASU has won eight of the last 15 team
titles and Jaguars have won two of the last four individual crowns.