RALEIGH, N.C. (Oct. 7, 2013) – Junior Rhys Pugh (Pontypridd, Wales) capped off a strong showing for the ETSU men’s golf team on Monday, as the Buccaneer golfer registered a hole-in-one on his second-to-last hole, and the Blue and Gold are in contention following day one of the Wolfpack Intercollegiate from the Lonnie Poole Golf Course.
Overall, ETSU is in second-place after the first two rounds, and the Bucs enter Tuesday’s final round three shots back of UNC Greensboro. The Bucs, who were tied for the lead with the Spartans after the first 18 holes, recorded a team score of 19-under-par 557 (276-281). UNCG carded a 10-under 278 in round two and sits atop the leaderboard at 22-under 554.
Pugh was consistent all afternoon and had ice water in his veins while standing on the tee box at the par-3, 126-yard 17th. After posting birdies on No. 11 and 13, the Welshman was sitting 2-under for the round, but Pugh's ace moved him up the board by finishing with a 4-under 68. Pugh was nearly flawless in the first round as he registered seven birdies, but a double-bogey on the par-5, 549-yard No. 15 cost the Buccaneer junior from carding his lowest round in his ETSU career. Pugh, who is tied for third in the tournament, totaled a 5-under 67 in the round, while his lowest collegiate score was a 66, in the first round of last year’s Tar Heel Intercollegiate.
“I didn’t see the ball go in because the pin was right over a bunker,” said Pugh, who recorded his fifth career ace and first at ETSU. “About five seconds after I hit it, people shouted it was in the hole. It was 126 yards and I used a wedge.
“As a team, we are pleased with how we played today. We put ourselves in a good position and hopefully we can make a run tomorrow. My score could’ve been a bit lower if some putts dropped, but overall it was a solid two rounds.”
As Pugh stole the headlines with his ace, sophomore Gudmundur Kristjansson (Reykjavik, Iceland) put together his best two rounds as a Buccaneer and is sitting in second-place at 10-under-par 134. Kristjansson tallied 13 birdies on the day, including seven in the second round where he collected his lowest collegiate score at 6-under 66. After birdying four of the final five holes to end his first round, Kristjansson birdied two of the first three holes to start the second, while he also wrapped up play like he did in the opener. Again, the Icelander recorded birdies on four of the final five holes to move six shots within the leader.
“Gudmundur and Rhys both played two great rounds of golf and I was pleased with today’s overall performance,” said head coach Fred Warren. “Rhys had an exciting finish to his day and Gudmundur was consistent in his two rounds.”
UNC Greensboro’s Carter Jenkins fired a 7-under 65 in round one and went 9-under 63 in the second, to sit at 16-under-par 128 for the tournament.
Other ETSU notables included Chris Hickman (Centreville, Md.) and Adrian Meronk (Wroclaw, Poland), as the Buccaneer sophomores are tied for 23rd at even-par 144.
Tuesday’s final round begins at 8 a.m., with the Bucs going out at 9:30. ETSU will be paired with UNCG and East Carolina. Fans can follow all the action via Golfstat.com.
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