Cougars one step closer to trip to Nationals

HOWEY-IN-THE-HILLS, Fla. — Entering the day in ninth place, the 10th-ranked Columbus State men's golf team moved three spots up the leaderboard to sixth on day two of the South/Southeast Regional. The postseason event is being held at the Mission Inn Resort & Club in Howey-in-the-Hills, FL.

The Cougars matched their team score from round one posting a 10-over par 298 in the second round.

Top-ranked Nova Southeastern surged into the lead on Tuesday at five-under for the tournament. They hold a nine-shot advantage over No. 2 Barry (four-over). Fifteenth-ranked Georgia College (10-over), No. 6 Florida Southern (12-over) and No. 5 Lynn (18-over) complete the top five.

For the second straight day, Columbus State (20-over) and No. 18 West Florida (20-over) sit tied.

As he did on day one, Robert Mize fired CSU's best round on Tuesday. Mize began his day with a birdie at the par-five first before giving the shot back on seven. He bounced back though with birdies on eight and 10 to move him to two-under. A bogey on 11 and a birdie on 12 left him in red numbers. However, a bogey on 14 and a double on 15 knocked him to one-over par where he finished the round. His two-day total of 145 (one-over) has him tied for eighth overall.

Bryan Lichimo made the biggest improvement in day two for the Cougars. After posting Columbus State's drop score in round one, the redshirt-sophomore responded with a two-over 74. Bogeys on three and seven put him at two-over when he made the turn, but he got back to even with back-to-back birdies at 13 and 14. Two bogeys over the final four holes ugh left him at two-over for the round. He is tied for 65th at 10-over for the tournament.

Following at 74 on Monday, freshman Jack Stumpfig fired a three-over par 75 in Tuesday's second round. He kicked off the day with a birdie at one, but proceeded to bogey two, five, seven and 11 to fall to three-over. A birdie on 14 and a bogey on 17 kept him at three-over par. Stumpfig is second overall for the Cougars in 31st place at five-over.

After a rough start to the day, Jesse Gibson bounced back to card a four-over 76 in round two. The redshirt-sophomore double-bogeyed one before bogeying two and three. Another bogey at five made him five-over through five holes. His game improved from there as he birdied eight, 13 and 14 to get to two-over. A hiccup on 17 cost him two shots to close out the round. Gibson is nine-over through two rounds in 57th.

Yannick Gumowski posted CSU's drop score on Tuesday with a five-over par 77. Two bogeys and two double-bogeys on the front nine put Gumowski in a hole at the turn. On the back side, the redshirt-freshman knocked down three birdies but also two bogeys to finish five-over. After two rounds, he is eight-over and tied for 50th place.

The Cougars must hold onto their spot on Wednesday as the top seven teams advance on to the NCAA Championship later in the month. Final round play will begin Wednesday morning.