LSU Gold

Connor Gaunt Fires Even Par Round For LSU in NCAA Golf Championships

Connor Gaunt posts even par round of 72, stands T27 +3 after 36 holes

by Kent Lowe
Connor Gaunt Fires Even Par Round For LSU in NCAA Golf Championships

CARLSBAD, California – LSU graduate Connor Gaunt, who was named Golf Coaches Association of America PING Southeast All-Region earlier in the day, fired an even par round of 72 here Saturday at the OMNI La Costa North Course in the second round of the NCAA Division I Men’s Golf Championship.

Gaunt would shoot a solid 3-birdie round to finish 36 holes at 3-over par 147 (75-72). He is T27 in the individual standings. Gaunt moved up 36 places in the standings with his even par finish and if LSU as a team does not make the top 15 after Sunday, then he certainly is in position to possibly advance to compete for the individual title on Monday.

The top nine players on teams not in the top 15 when the cut was made are still eligible to compete for the individual title in the final round.

The LSU team probably would rather not have to play holes 12-16 again at the OMNI La Costa North Course in the windy conditions they had to play the holes that have easily been the hardest of the tournament.

Through two rounds of the championship, hole 14 is playing +.50 over par, toughest of the event, while hole 12 is playing +45 over par with just one birdie on the par 3 hole Saturday. The 13th is fourth toughest at +38 and the par 3 16th over water is sixth toughest at +.32.

The Tigers counted eight bogeys through that stretch, but once they cleared it appeared LSU was ready to see some easier holes and conditions that allowed some scoring opportunities.

Gaunt birdied the par 5 18th hole, the par 5 second and the par 4 fourth to get to 2-under at that point for his round and help LSU jump up eight spots to 11th place in the standings with what at that point with four holes to play was the second-best round of the afternoon wave on the course at 6-over par.

Unfortunately for the Tigers, LSU could not sustain the play on holes 6-9, their closing four holes, in a counting 12-over par to finish the round at 18-over par 306 and stand in 25th place at 31-over par 607.

LSU will enter Sunday’s final round nine shots behind Stanford’s 22-over par that holds the 15th spot, which would be the cut line for Monday’s final round.

LSU counted a 5-over 77 from Luke Haskew, a 6-over 78 from Jay Mendell and a 7-over 79 from Alex Price. Haskew after 36 holes is at 7-over 151 which is T67 for the tournament.

Virginia is the tournament leader at 1-over par for 36 holes (290-287 – 577), three shots clear of Illinois (293-287 – 580) with Vanderbilt from the SEC in third at 583. Stanford in 15th is one shot behind a tie for 12th of Tennessee, Texas and Florida at +21. After Stanford at +22 is California in 16th at +24 and Notre Dame at +25 in 17th.

Stanford’s Karl Vilips is the individual leader at 7-under par 137 after rounds of 69-68. George Duangmanee of Virginia (71-71) and Adam Wallin of Ohio State are tied for second at 2-over 142.

A total of six players are under par through 36 holes of the competition.

LSU will play with Clemson and Oklahoma State in the third round on Sunday beginning at 1:17 p.m. PDT (3:17 p.m. Baton Rouge time). Live scoring at and updates on “X” @LSUmensgolf and @LSUKent.

T27 Connor Gaunt – 75-72 – 147 +3
T66 Luke Haskew – 74-77 – 151 +7
T109 Jay Mendell – 76-78 – 154 +10
T117 Alex Price – 76-79 – 155 +11
T144 Lance Yates – 76-85 – 161 +17