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Golf in Seventh Place after Day One at VCU
Battling less than ideal weather conditions throughout the day, Liberty was able to trim four shots off its first round score but still finds itself in eighth place following two rounds of action at the VCU Shootout.
Liberty fired an opening-round seven-over par 295 on Monday, playing the par-72 Hermitage Country Club in steady rain showers. During the afternoon flight, Liberty was one of nine programs in the 13-team field to post better scores, but the four-shot improvement still leaves the Flames in eighth place with a 10-over 586 (295-291).
After firing an even-par 288 during the morning round, UNC Wilmington found the 6,955-yard trek much more to its liking during the afternoon. The Seahawks carded a 12-under par 276 and stand seven shots clear of the field heading into the last round of the 54-hole event (564).
First-round leader East Carolina has dropped back to second place, as the Pirates have posted a five-under par 571 (282-289). Richmond (287-287) and Wake Forest (285-289) are the only other programs in red figures, as both enter the last round at two-under par 574.
Iowa State's Nate McCoy (69-68) and East Carolina's Harold Varner (70-67) share the lead over the 78-man field, as both golfers carded seven-under par rounds of 137. McCoy was the lone golfer in the field to break 70 during both rounds on a day when the course was playing at a 74.45 stroke average.
Liberty's Chase Marinell is one of 15 golfers in the field to currently be in red figures. After opening with a two-over par 74, the freshman fired a three-under par 69 during the afternoon, thanks to four birdies and a bogey to share 12th place with a one-under par 143.
Max McKay opened with a two-under par 70, which was good for a share of fifth place following the morning flight. However, a pair of bogeys on No. 12 and 15 and a double bogey on the par-4 No. 14 hole dropped the sophomore to a one-over par 145 (70-75) and a share of 19th place.
Robert Karlsson (76-73) and Preston Dembowiak (75-74), who were both coming off solid performances at last week's Golfweek Conference Challenge where they finished in red figures, are two of 10 golfers who share 35th place with a five-over par 149.
The pair both had close stretches of holes that contributed to their over-par scores during the afternoon flights. Karlsson bogeyed three of his last six holes on his front nine, while Dembowiak let a two-under par score get away with bogeys on No. 12, 13, 15 and 17.
Ian McConnell, Liberty's final golfer in the field, enters the third round tied for 63rd place with a nine-over par 153 (77-76). The freshman opened his second round with a double bogey on the par-4, No. 3 hole and then carded three birdies and five bogeys during his remaining 17 holes of play on Monday.
The entire 78-man field will return to the Hermitage Country Club tomorrow morning for a shotgun start at 8:45 a.m. Liberty will be teeing off holes No. 8, 9 and 10 and will be pair with golfers from Virginia Tech and Iowa State during the final 18 holes of play.