April 19, 2010
PALM HARBOR, Fla. – A trio of sophomores helped lead the Fighting Irish men’s golf team on day two of the 2010 BIG EAST Championship, as Chris Walker (The Woodlands, Texas/The Woodlands), Max Scodro (Chicago, Ill./Notre Dame Prep) and Tom Usher (Bradford, England/Guiseley School) all shot even par on better on Monday at the Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club’s Copperhead Course. The Irish moved up to fifth place at the championship after shaving ten strokes off their first round total to turn in a second round five-over par 289 on day two. Entering the final round of play, the Irish trail the leaders from Georgetown by eight strokes.
Scodro carded his second consecutive even-par 71 to take hold of third place on the individual leaderboard. In the second round, Scodro played the front nine at minus-one 35, including birdies on the first, third and fifth holes. On the back nine, he registered a one-over par 36 and he ended up recording pars on 11 of his final 12 holes. He enters the final day of play just two strokes off the lead, which is currently held by Michael Furci of DePaul.
Walker was a major force in Notre Dame’s 10-stroke improvement, as he shot a minus-one 70 in the second round after shooting an eight-over par 79 in the opening round. He got off to a strong start with a birdie on the first hole and, after two pars and a bogey, he chipped in for birdie at the par-4 fifth to regain some momentum. He also birdied the ninth to turn in a two-under par 34 on the front. He then notched eight pars before recording a bogey at the 18th for a one-over par 36 on the back nine. Walker jumped from 49th to 27th on the individual leaderboard.
Usher also had a strong day for the Irish that was highlighted by a hole in one at the par-3 17th. Usher used a five iron to ace the 205-yard hole. He also had 13 pars and two birdies on the day. Aided by the ace, he played the back nine at a minus-one clip. He also had an impressive birdie chip-in from a sand trap on the fifth hole. For the tournament, Usher is four-over par (146) and tied for ninth with six other golfers.
Senior Doug Fortner (Tustin, Calif./Foothill) rounded out the scoring for the Irish with a six-over par 77. He struggled early, as he was four-over par after three holes of play, but he settled down to record 11 pars and a birdie on his final 15 holes of play. After two rounds, Fortner is tied for 45th at 11-over par (153).
Senior Josh Sandman (Greensboro, N.C./Southeast Guilford) carded an eight-over par 79 and is now in 54th.
The final round of play at the 2010 BIG EAST Championship gets underway at 8:00 a.m. tomorrow, when the Irish are slated to begin teeing it up from the first hole with players from Louisville and Villanova. Live final round scoring will be available through www.golfstat.com, while a complete final round recap will be posted on und.com following the conclusion of play.
Notre Dame Scores3. Max Scodro (71-71-142)T-9. Tom Usher (75-71-146)T-27. Chris Walker (79-70-149)T-45. Doug Fortner (76-77-15354. Josh Sandman (77-79-156)
Team Leaderboard1. Georgetown (294-286-580)2. St. John's (289-296-585)3. Seton Hall (295-292-587)3. Louisville (293-294-587)5. Notre Dame (299-289-588)6. Villanova (304-287-591)7. Rutgers (302-290-592)7. Cincinnati (303-289-592)9. Connecticut (296-297-593)10. Marquette (306-288-594)11. DePaul (304-298-602)12. USF (315-288-603)