Three Kansas Golfers Break Par in Second Round of Louisiana Classics

March 5, 2012

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LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas men’s golf improved its score by 13 strokes in the second round of the Louisiana Classics, posting a 284 (-4) to end day one of the tournament in 11th place with a 36-hole total of 581 (+5) Monday.

Freshman Dylan McClure paced the Jayhawks with a two-round score of 144 (E) to finish the day tied for 26th place. After starting his day with five-straight bogeys, McClure was able to turn it around with five birdies and one bogey to close out his opening round with a 73 (+1). McClure then birdied three holes in the afternoon as part of a 1-under-par round of 71.

“I’m really proud of Dylan today,” said Kansas head coach Kit Grove. “He fought back to shoot 73 in the morning round and obviously shot 1-under in the afternoon round, so that’s stepping up to the plate and really showing me something.”

The biggest individual improvement by a Jayhawk in the first two rounds came from junior Chris Gilbert, who carded a 69 in round two after shooting an 80 in the morning round. Gilbert led Kansas in the fall with a 72.79 scoring average.

“It’s been two years, when we played at this exact same golf course, since he shot a competitive round in the 80s,” said Grove. “That was a little unexpected out of him, but he was able to put it behind him and shoot our low round in the afternoon. That’s obviously a good sign.”

Junior Paul Harris mirrored Gilbert’s turnaround in the afternoon and appeared to be on his way to the low round of the tournament, shooting 5-under par through 15 holes. Harris had to close his round on two of the toughest four holes of the day, though (No. 15 and No. 16), and three-straight bogeys on his final three holes ended Harris’ round at 2-under par.

“Paul really had it going,” said Grove. “It’s unfortunate because he was 120 yards out on No. 14 and made bogey, and the 16th hole was really hard (No. 1 difficulty for the day). That’s a part of golf, but when you have a guy 5-under, you’d love to have him keep it there or make one or two more birdies coming in. Overall, though, it was very positive to have three guys shoot under par on the afternoon.”

Kansas enters the final day only five shots behind the host school Louisiana-Lafayette for sixth place.

“Hopefully getting a good round under their belt will settle them down,” said Grove. “Illinois is a top-25 team (No. 24 in last week’s coaches’ poll), and we’re ahead of them right now. It was a team effort in the afternoon. That’s all we can ask for. If they can go out and shoot another round under par tomorrow, we’ll move up the leaderboard against a very strong field. Obviously, your goal isn’t to finish seventh (out of 15) coming into the week, but if we finish in the middle of this field, we can have a very positive finish and get the spring started off in the right direction.”

The final round of the Louisiana Classics will begin with a shotgun start Tuesday morning at 8 a.m.