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RIO GRANDE, Puerto Rico (Feb. 24, 2014) – Coming off a disappointing showing in Sunday’s opening round of the Puerto Rico Classic, the ETSU men’s golf team made a charge on Monday as the Bucs fired a 5-under-par 283 and were led by the strong play of sophomore Chris Hickman (Centreville, Md.) from the Rio Mar Beach Resort & Spa’s River Course.
The Bucs, who entered the day in 15th place, moved five spots up the leaderboard and are tied for 10th with UNC Greensboro at 5-over-par 581. Following Monday’s second round play, the Blue and Gold sit ahead of 32nd-ranked SMU, No. 33 Northwestern and 48th-ranked North Carolina, while the Bucs are also only 10 shots shy of moving into the top-five; featuring a field of 11 teams that ranked in the top-50 nationally.
Meanwhile, ETSU was paced by Hickman as the Centreville, Md. native fired a 4-under 68 and moved into a seven-way tie for 13th at 3-under 141. Hickman registered a bogey-free round and posted four birdies on the day. The Buccaneer standout began the day with a 3 on the par-4, 423-yard No. 16 and ended the round with a 4 on the par-5, 544-yard No. 15.
For the second straight round, No. 1 Alabama sits atop the leaderboard as the Crimson Tide totaled a 16-under 272 and moved to 31-under 545 for the tournament. Alabama, the reigning tournament champion, enters Tuesday’s final round with a 10 shot lead over fourth-ranked Georgia Tech.
As the Crimson Tide hold a strong lead for the team title, Alabama’s Robby Shelton also sits in first-place for the individual championship. Shelton, the seventh-ranked player according to Golfweek, carded an 8-under 64 in the second round and is 13-under 131 for the tournament. Purdue’s Adam Schenk, who held the lead after the first 18 holes of play, sits in second at 10-under.
Joining Hickman with a strong move on Monday was fellow sophomore Adrian Meronk (Wroclaw, Poland). Meronk began the round in a tie for 56th, but moved into 27th after carding a 3-under 69, and is even-par 144 for the tournament. Meronk finished the round with a flurry of birdies as he posted four straight from No. 12-15, and tallied six total for the round.
The Bucs finish play in the Puerto Rico Classic Tuesday morning at 7:30 a.m., as ETSU is paired with UNCG and SMU.
Live scoring of the tournament can be accessed via GolfStat.com.
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For more information on Buccaneer men’s golf, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the men’s golf page.