COLLEGE GROVE, Tenn. – The Texas Tech men’s golf team picked up a great round from Hannes Ronneblad on Tuesday, but is still looking up at the majority of the field at the NCAA College Grove Regional, in College Grove, Tenn.
Ronneblad birdied five of the last 10 holes to polish off a 2-under 70, which vaulted him into a tie for seventh place for the tournament (-3). Ronneblad’s current standing could earn him qualification for the NCAA Championship, as the top individual in the field whose team does not advance will qualify to play as an individual.
“It’s great to see Hannes playing like this, because he deserves the world for how hard he works,” Texas Tech head coach Greg Sands said. “We’ve been telling the guys to stay patient and he has been utilizing that advice. He started three-over today, but didn’t lose focus. He hung in there, and once a couple birdies dropped he got on a roll.”
However, for the second-straight day, Ronneblad was the only Red Raider under par. Tech started on the No. 10 tee and went five holes before carding its first birdie of the day, collecting three bogeys and two double bogeys in the process. The birdie, coming from Fredrik Nilehn on No. 15, was immediately followed by a triple bogey on No. 16 and a bogey on No. 17. Nilehn went on to shoot a 10-over 82, meaning his score, the highest total of the five Red Raiders on the day, was dropped from the team score.
Tech would build a bit of momentum with a combined four birdies on holes 17 and 18, followed by four more on Nos. 2 and 3, but would go 6-over the rest of the way to finish with a 3-over 291 as a team. That round dropped the Red Raiders to 14-over for the tournament, but allowed them to move up a couple spots into 10th place on the leaderboard.
No. 2 Vanderbilt (-12) leads the way, and Kennesaw State (-1) holds the coveted fifth-place spot, which is required to advance to nationals, meaning Tech is 15 shots back of the cutline.
“This game can be funny,” Sands said. “Sometimes there are days where it can be really streaky, and we could have a day like that tomorrow. We need multiple guys playing really well, but that is something we have gotten plenty of times this year. The good news is we really don’t have the pressure the teams at the top do. We can come out and freewheel it, and possibly put even more pressure on those teams.”
Hurly Long (+4) had a very solid round before closing bogey-bogey to card a 74, and he is 34th overall. Ivan Ramirez (+7, T49) rebounded from his first-round 78 with a 73 on Tuesday and Federico Zucchetti shot a 2-over 74, bringing him to 10-over for the tournament, in a tie for 62nd place.
Tech is scheduled to begin round three on Wednesday at 8:25 a.m., going off the 10th tee, paired with TCU and East Tennessee State.
Golfstat will handle live scoring all three days. For live on-site updates, follow the Red Raiders on Twitter at @TTUMensGolf, and like them on Facebook at Facebook.com/TTUMensGolf.