FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Junior Chandler Eaton fired a one-under 71 on Saturday, but once again the Blessings Golf Club posed a challenge in the second round of the 2019 NCAA Men’s Golf Championship in Fayetteville, Ark.
Eaton’s 71 highlighted the morning for the Blue Devils, who slipped to 29th on the team leaderboard. Duke followed its 313 team score on Friday with a 305 Saturday and is 42-over par through 36 holes. No. 1-ranked Oklahoma State (-10) is the lone team of the 30 in red figures heading to Sunday.
Teeing off No. 1, Eaton jumped-started his round with a birdie on the par-5 second, but gave it back with a bogey on the par-4 third. He parred out the front from there, including a tricky up-and-down save from behind the green on the tough par-4 seventh.
Eaton was back in the red thanks to a 20-foot putt for birdie on the par-5 10th, and parred eight straight holes on the home half to sign for a 71 – tied for his second-lowest career round in the NCAA Championship. Through 36 holes, the junior from Alpahretta, Ga., is tied for 33rd at three-over 147.
“Yesterday I played really well, just finished poorly,” said Eaton. “Today I kept doing what I was doing, stayed in the moment and the score was better. This is such a unique course with some really tough holes where pars feel like birdies. You really have to adjust your game, and know when to take on a shot, or dial back and play safe.”
Sophomore Adrien Pendaries and junior Steven DiLisio each shot rounds of 77 on Saturday, while senior Alex Smalley and sophomore Evan Katz each posted an 80. DiLisio played a seven-hole stretch in three-under par in Round 2, thanks to birdies on seven, 10, 11 and 13.
The Blue Devils will need a Sunday charge to remain alive in the NCAA Championship, as the field will be cut to the low 15 teams for Monday’s final round of stroke play before the low eight advance to match play that begins Tuesday.
Duke will be paired with BYU and Louisville on Sunday, teeing off on No. 1 at 1:50 p.m. CT (2:50 ET) with live scoring available at golfstat.com.
T33. Chandler Eaton (76-71=147, +3)
T102. Adrien Pendaries (78-77=155, +11)
T128. Steven DiLisio (81-77=158, +14)
T135. Evan Katz (79-80=159, +15)
T138. Alex Smalley (80-80=160, +16)
Sunday Tee Times
Hole 1 – Smalley (1:50 p.m. CT)
Hole 1 – Katz (2:01 p.m. CT)
Hole 1 – DiLisio (2:12 p.m. CT)
Hole 1 – Pendaries (2:23 p.m. CT)
Hole 1 – Eaton (2:34 p.m. CT)