PONTE VERDRA BEACH, Fla. – Back-to-back scores of 304 on Monday at the competitive Jacksonville Invite put the FGCU men’s golf team in sole possession of ninth place in the 15-team field after the first two rounds on the PLAYERS Stadium Course at the TPC at Sawgrass.
The 15-team field included nine programs in the top-100 of Golf Week’s current rankings, highlighted by Florida (286-283/569) who finished the fall at No. 1. The Gators put together a pair of under-par rounds on the day to build a 17-stroke advantage over second place North Florida (586).
FGCU’s two rounds of 304 put it seven strokes ahead of defending Atlantic Sun champion ETSU (615).
“I’m more disappointed in our second round that our first,” said head coach Brent Jensen. “We pride ourselves on improving in the second round and we didn’t do that today unlike most of the field. Tomorrow is going to show a lot of about where we are and I’ve got confidence that we can bounce back.”
The Eagles were led by the duo of junior Brandon Pena (Clewiston, Fla./Clewiston HS) and senior Dan Mazziotta (Fort Myers, Fla./Cypress Lake HS), who have each started every tournament in 2010-11. Pena finished the day in a tie for 14th out of the field of 75 participants that includes nine top 100 players. Led by seven birdies over the 36 holes, Pena posted team-bests of two-over par 74 and one-over par 73. Mazziotta’s pair of 75s put him in a tie for 19th overall, putting him in line to finish in the top-20 for the 24th time in 33 career events.
Junior Alex Medinis (Fort Myers, Fla./Fort Myers HS) turned in a pair of counting scores with a 77-78/156 and sits in a tie for 37th. Classmate Patrick Williams (Toronto, Canada/Crescent School) turned in back-to-back 78s to account for the team’s fourth score each round.
The Eagles will be back on par-72, 7,122-yard PLAYERS Stadium Course starting at 10:57 a.m. on Tuesday. FGCU will tee off on No. 1, playing alongside Clemson for the second day and East Carolina.
Live in-progress scoring of Tuesday’s final round can be found at www.GolfStat.com. A link to the live scoring can be found by going to the FGCU men’s golf schedule and clicking on the day’s event or by going to www.GolfStat.com and searching for the JU Invitational on the front page.
T-13. Brandon Pena – 74-73/147
T-19. Dan Mazziotta – 75-75/150
T-37. Alex Medinis – 77-78/155
T-50. Patrick Williams – 78-78/156
T-66. Kyle English – 78-84/162
TOURNAMENT STANDINGS (Golf Week Ranking)
1. Florida (1) – 286-283/569(-5)
2. North Florida (50) – 300-286/586
3. Liberty (43) – 300-290/590
4. Jacksonville State (88) – 294-298/592
5. Wake Forest (21) – 301-296/597
6. Mercer (111) – 301-297/598
7. Clemson (41) – 303-297/600
8. East Carolina (42) – 305-298/603
9. Florida Gulf Coast (81) – 304-304/608
10. East Tennessee State (80) – 312-303/615
T-11. Old Dominion (180) – 322-295/617
T-11. Jacksonville (141) – 311-306/617
T-11. Charleston Southern (208) – 307-310/617
14. Georgia State (149) – 314-310/624
15. James Madison (168) – 313-321/634