The Lee men's golf team watched Gulf South Conference rival West Florida go out and post a -8 280 on Monday morning in the opening round of the NCAA Division II Men's South/SE Region and could post only a 310 score in their afternoon round. No question the Flames will have a long way to battle back in the 54-hole event being staged at hte Mission Inn Golf and Tennis Resort.
While West Florida is holding the No. 1 spot, Lynn University (Fla.) is second (282). Limestone College and Columbus State both finished at 291 and are tied for third, while Barry (Fla.) and Georgia Southwestern (292) are deadlocked for the fifth spot in the 20-team field.
West Florida's Chandler Blanchet and Lynn's Manuel Torres are tied for top medalist honors. Both had impressive rounds of 65. Richard Mansell (Nova SE) had a 67 and holds down the third position. Barry's Nico Cavero had a 68 and is in the fourth position, while Ethan Chamineak and Jacob Huizinga carded 69 and round out the top five in the field of 108 golfers.
Senior Taylor Davis was best for the Flames with a 75. Peyton Sliger followed with a 77, while Corey Sheppard and Adam Wright each posted a 79. Shea Sylvester rounded out the Lee scoring with an 80.
The Lee women's golf team (306) will trail Nova Southeastern (295) by 11 strokes heading into the second round of the NCAA Division II Women's Super Region 2 on Tuesday.
The 54-hole event is being staged at the Marcus Pointe Golf Club. After the opening round of play, After the opening round of play, four of the top five teams are from the state of Florida. St. Leo, Rollins College, and Florida Tech join Nova in rounding out the top four, while the University of Montevallo (Ala.) is in fifth place.
In the medalist hunt, Florida Tech's Felicia Leftinger was the top scorer with a 69. Margine Arguello of St. Leo is second (70), Aldana Foigel (Nova SE) and Hally Ledbetter (Rollins) are tied for third at 71, while Annie Dulman (Rollins) rounded out the top five with an even-par 72.
The Lady Flames were able to stay close to the power-packed field with consistent play. Sam Burrus led the way with a 75. Cailey Gino followed (76) and Caroline Moore totaled a 77. Bernadette Little posted the final Lee score that counted (78) and Callie Kitchens finished with a 79.
"For the most part all of our girls had solid starts during their first round," said Lee assistant coach Hunter Vest. "We had several great birdie opportunities but couldn't seem to convert them which slowed down some of our earlier momentum.
"However, the girls did a fantastic job of staying patient and not letting missed opportunities change their mindsets whatsoever. I believe if we can continue this patient play and stay committed to the game plan we have in place that it will pay off sooner rather than later on the greens. We are all excited to get back out on the course tomorrow and see what we can do in what looks like might be much wetter conditions."