ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. - Seniors Austin Gutgsell and Sang Yi carded matching scores of even-par 70 on Saturday while leading the 17th-ranked LSU men's golf team through the second round for the 2012 SEC Men's Golf Championships being held this week at the Seaside Course at Sea Island Golf Club.
The Tigers slashed 16 shots from their first-round score with a team total of 4-over par 284 on Saturday to finish the day in 12th place in the team standings with a 36-hole score of 20-over par 580.
Gutgsell vaulted himself 10 spots up the leaderboard as he followed a 4-over par 74 in Friday's first round with a career-best effort of even-par 70 at the Seaside Course while wrapping up Saturday's second round in a tie for 32nd place in the individual standings at 4-over par 144 after 36 holes.
Yi, who opened with a 6-over 76 on Friday, fired a matching score of even-par 70 on the day to move into a tie for 41st place overall at 6-over 146 for the championship.
Sophomore Andrew Presley and freshman Stewart Jolly also fired identical scores of 2-over par 72 for the afternoon in leading the Tigers to a team score of 4-over par 284 in the second round. Presley wrapped up the day in a tie for 32nd place overall with Gutgsell at 4-over 144, while Jolly finished the second round in a tie for 41st place with Yi at 6-over 146 after 36 holes of this year's SEC Championships.
Sophomore Franco Castro rounded out the scoring for the Tigers on Saturday with a 4-over 74 to wrap up the second round in 53rd place in the individual standings at 13-over par 153.
No. 8-ranked Alabama has taken a commanding 11-shot lead in the race for the team championship as the Crimson Tide followed its 8-under par 272 in the first round with a 6-under par 274 in the second round for a 36-hole score of 14-under par 546. Third-ranked Auburn and 25th-ranked Georgia trail 11 shots back in a tie for second place in the team standings with matching 36-hole scores of 3-under 557.
The defending champion Florida Gators are 15 strokes off the pace in sole possession of fourth place at 1-over 561, while the Arkansas Razorbacks round out the top five in fifth place at 6-over 566.
Tennessee's Rick Lamb has fired back-to-back rounds of 3-under 67 to move into a tie for first place with Alabama's Bobby Wyatt atop the leaderboard with matching 36-hole scores of 6-under 134. After posting a 5-under 65 to take the first-round lead, Wyatt shot 1-under 69 on Saturday to fall back into a tie with the Volunteer standout for the individual lead after two days of action.
Alabama's Justin Thomas trails by just one shot after carding rounds of 2-under 68 and 3-under 67 for the weekend, while Auburn's Michael Johnson, Mississippi State, Chad Ramey and Florida's TJ Vogel round out the top five in a tie for fourth place at 3-under par 137 for the championship.
The Tigers are paired with Kentucky and Mississippi State in Sunday's final round as they will begin play in the second wave off the back nine beginning at 7:20 a.m. CDT. Live scoring of the final round of the 2012 Southeastern Conference Men's Golf Championships will be provided by Golfstat, and can be found online at the organization's official website at www.golfstat.com.
2012 SEC MEN'S GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPS - SECOND ROUND RESULTS
TEAM SCORES (Par 560)
1. Alabama 272-274 - 546 -14; T2. Georgia 273-284 - 557 -3; T2. Auburn 277-280 - 557 -3; 4. Florida 283-278 - 561 +1; 5. Arkansas 286-280 - 566 +6; 6. Ole Miss 287-285 - 572 +12; T7. Vanderbilt 289-286 - 575 +15; T7. Tennessee 285-290 - 575 +15; T9. South Carolina 289-289 - 578 +18; T9. Kentucky 284-294 - 578 +18; 11. Mississippi State 289-290 - 579 +19; 12. LSU 296-284 - 580 +20.
TOP 10 INDIVIDUALS (Par 140)
T1. Rick Lamb, Tennessee, 67-67 - 134 -6; T1. Bobby Wyatt, Alabama, 65-69 - 134 -6; 3. Justin Thomas, Alabama, 68-67 - 135 -5; T4. Michael Johnson, Auburn, 68-69 - 137 -3; T4. Chad Ramey, Mississippi State, 67-70 - 137 -3; T4. TJ Vogel, Florida, 67-70 - 137 -3; 7. Brian Carter, Georgia, 68-70 - 138 -2; T8. Blayne Barber, Auburn, 71-68 - 139 -1; T8. Hunter Hamrick, Alabama, 68-71 - 139 -1; T8. Tyler McCumber, Florida, 70-69 - 139 -1; T8. Will McCurdy, Auburn, 68-71 - 139 -1; T8. Keith Mitchell, Georgia, 68-71 - 139 -1.