ATHENS, Ga. (WBKO) --- WKU Hilltopper Golf senior Billy Tom Sargent shot the lowest NCAA Regional round in program history Tuesday, putting himself in contention to advance with one round to go.
Sargent shot a 2-under 69 at the par-71, 7,253-yard University of Georgia Golf Course, giving him a two-round total of 140 (71-69) at the Athens (Ga.) Regional.
That has him in sixth place and just two strokes off the tournament lead. He’ll tee off at 9:04 a.m. CT Wednesday in the final round.
“Today I just tried to stick to my game plan and play steady golf,” Sargent said. “Pars are good on this course, so I just played for pars all day and gave myself a few birdie opportunities. Scores aren’t very low, so I knew that I didn’t need to press for birdies too hard. I had one mental error today where I hit in the water and made a bogey, but other than that I played solid golf.”
After three days of play, the top five teams and the top individual not on those teams advance to the 2019 NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championships.
Of the five individuals currently ahead of Sargent, four are on programs primed to advance as a team – Georgia and Vanderbilt – and the other’s team (Nevada) is also vying for a spot.
Sargent wrapped up his front nine with birdies on two of his final three holes, then countered his lone bogey on the 12th with his final birdie in the par-3 16th.
His 69 beats the previous WKU record for an NCAA Regional round of 71 originally set by Brent Long in 2006 and tied Monday by Sargent and his teammate Stuart Easton.
Sargent’s 140 total over 36 holes is three strokes better than Long’s previous record of 143 set in 2006.
Over at the Myrtle Beach (S.C.) Regional, Easton fired a 1-over 73 in Tuesday’s second round at the par-72, 6,950-yard TPC Myrtle Beach.
His two-round total of 144 (71-73) is the third-lowest NCAA Regional score for 36 holes in Hilltopper history.
Easton is tied for 17th individually in the field and has the lowest score among the other players competing solely as individuals. He’s scheduled to tee off at 9:04 a.m. CT Wednesday in the final round.
“I played well and put myself in a lot of good positions off the tee, but didn’t capitalize with my approach play,” Easton said. “I stuck to my game plan and plotted my way around the course well. I just didn’t quite have the sharpness I needed, but my game is in really good shape, though.”