A Number of eGolf Tour Players Inside the Number Through 36 Holes of PGA TOUR Q-School’s Opening Week
By Stewart Moore
Charlotte, N.C. – Over 640 players from 45 states and over 25 countries competed on the 2012 eGolf Tour, all working towards one singular goal – reaching the PGA TOUR. This week, at six sites across the country, the vast majority of those players are taking the first step towards achieving that goal by competing in the TOUR’s grueling Qualifying Tournament. Wednesday marked the completion of 36 holes, with just two rounds now remaining in the opening week for Q-School’s first stage.
At The Club at Irish Creek in Kannapolis, NC, Jason Millard continues to lead at 10-under 132, but 2012 eGolf Tour members Chip Lynn of Lillington, NC and Sebastian MacLean of Bolivia sit tied for second, three shots back at 7-under 135. Lynn, who posted three top-10s in 21 starts on the eGolf Tour this year, got to 6-under on the day in round two with back-to-back birdies on Nos. 6 and 7 (his 15th and 16th holes), but gave one back with a bogey at the watery par-3 eighth, and wound up at 5-under on the day. eGolf Tour member Chris Epperson of Hilton Head Island, SC, currently third on the eGolf Tour money list, is alone in fourth place with rounds of 69-67—136 to sit perched at 6-under through 36 holes. Epperson was a study in consistency in 2012, making 17 of 17 cuts on the eGolf Tour, with 11 top-10s and only one finish outside the top 25. Current eGolf Tour members Mike Van Sickle and Matthew Ryan are tied for fifth at 5-under 137, just five shots off of Millard’s lead. There are currently an astounding twelve 2012 eGolf Tour members inside the magic number at Kannapolis, as well as an additional four eGolf Tour players sitting inside the top 19.
Former U.S. Junior Amateur champion Sihwan Kim, who finished runner-up at the eGolf Tour’s Palmetto Hall Championship in February, is starting to separate himself from the field at Grasslands Golf & Country Club in Lakeland, FL, having notched rounds of 64-65—129 (15-under) to seize a three-shot lead at the site’s halfway point. Kim, who starred as a member of the Stanford Cardinal golf team in college, has played flawless golf through two rounds, posting 15 birdies and 21 pars to reach his 129 total. Recent eGolf Tour participant Randall Hutchison of Traverse City, MI is tied for fourth at 10-under 134, while longtime eGolf Tour player Brad Brunner of Tampa, FL is six shots back of Kim’s lead at 9-under par, having opened with rounds of 67-68—135. Former eGolf Tour member Brian Anderson of Jupiter, FL, who spent 2012 as a member of the Web.com Tour, posted the day’s low round at Grasslands with a bogey-free 64 that vaulted him from well outside the number all the way up to a tie for 10th at 8-under 136. All told, nine eGolf Tour players are inside the top 19 with two rounds to play in Lakeland.
Former eGolf Tour player and Alabama golfer Matt Hughes of Gulfport, MS is alone in second place at Lantana Golf Club in Lantana, TX. Hughes, who held the 18-hole lead after opening his week with a 5-under 67 on Tuesday, posted a 2-under 70 on Wednesday to move to 7-under par, just three shots back of leader Daniel Nisbet. Longtime eGolf Tour member and past champion Michael Sims of Bermuda is tied for eighth, seven shots off the lead following rounds of 70-71—141 (3-under). Sims garnered national attention when he set an eGolf Tour record with a 12-under 59 in the second round of the Southern Open in July. Playing at tournament co-host Country Club of Salisbury, he birdied the first eight holes en route to reaching golf’s magical number, which left him with the nickname of “Mr. 59” for the remainder of the year. That round led to a playoff loss to Weaver in the event – one of six top-10s for Sims on the year. Nine eGolf Tour players are inside the number through 36 holes at Lantana G.C.
At The Classic Club in Palm Desert, CA, former eGolf Tour player Ben Fox of Studio City, CA is the 36-hole leader with rounds of 69-66—135 and a one-shot lead at 9-under par. Former eGolf Tour member and UNC Charlotte star Trevor Murphy of Scottsdale, AZ is one back of Fox at 8-under par on the heels of a 69-67—136 start to his week. Murphy had a roller coaster of a second round on Wednesday, notching eight birdies and three bogeys on the former PGA TOUR venue en route to his 5-under effort on the day. Brad Hopfinger of Lake Forest, IL, who was tied for the lead with former eGolf Tour member David Bradshaw through 18 holes, backed up his first-round 66 with a 71 in round two to fall into a tie for fifth at 7-under 137.
Current eGolf Tour member and former UCLA star Gregor Main of Danville, CA is tied for sixth through two rounds at Dayton Valley Golf Club in Dayton, NV. The former Western Amateur champion followed up a first-round 68 with a second-round 72 to reach 4-under at the site’s halfway point, just four shots off the lead.
The overflow site for first stage was set up at Lake Caroline Golf Club in Madison, MS. Current eGolf Tour member Marcus Manley, as well as former players Anthony Rodriguez and Daniel Bowden, are tied for fourth at 5-under 135, just five shots back of the site’s 36-hole co-leaders. Manley, a Washington D.C. native, birdied two of his first 12 holes in Wednesday’s second round to reach 7-under par, but suffered a late double-bogey at the par-4 16th that left him at even-par 70 for the day. Former eGolf Tour player Brent Witcher and Ryan Spears are tied for seventh at 4-under 136, while three-time eGolf Tour winner Ted Brown of Glen Allen, VA sits tied for 13th with rounds of 67-70 that have him at 3-under for the week. Among the players tied with Brown is former eGolf Tour member Eric Onesi, who opened with a 5-under 65 on Tuesday, but posted two double-bogeys on Wednesday on his way to a second-round 72.
Check the eGolf Tour website daily for updates from all first stage sites. For live scoring results from each site on PGATOUR.com, please click here.