Blue Raiders carry 2-stroke lead into final round
Bulle tied for fifth overallMarch 31, 2008 · MT Media Relations
Middle Tennessee, which trailed Southern Mississippi by three shots after the first round, turned the table and became one of two teams to post a sub-par round during the opening day of competition with a second-round 287 to open a two-stroke lead entering final round play Tuesday.
Middle Tennessee's 5-over 581 is two strokes ahead of Southern Miss' 583 and three better than third-place UALR atop a tightly-contested field after the first two rounds. The top five teams are separated by nine strokes. The Blue Raiders were led by sophomore Kent Bulle's even-par 144, which is tied for fifth overall and four shots off the individual lead of 4-under 140 established by Austin Peay's Grant Leaver.
"We got off to a little shaky start in the first round by the course conditions pretty much did that to all the teams," Middle Tennessee coach Whit Turnbow said. "I think the course conditions and playing at home had our team tight. It's more difficult playing at home because everything is different, believe it or not. We are used to be on the road where it is the team and the course. Now the guys are playing in front of their friends and family and people from the community so it's a different pressure but it is more difficult."
The Blue Raiders, who are attempting to add to their already record three-straight tournament team titles, and Austin Peay's Governors were the only teams to have rounds under par. They both shot 287 in the second round when the course conditions were greatly improved but strong winds and a wet trek created havoc nonetheless.
That's what made Bulle's second round performance even more impressive. The sophomore from Glasgow, Ky., shot a 2-under 70 in the second round to tie Southern Mississippi's Wes Carter for the third best round of the day. Bulle just missed an eagle on the par-4 No. 11 when his chip shot came to a rest on the cusp of the cup. He tapped in for one of his tournament-best eight birdies through two rounds.
Bulle is tied for fifth at even par 144 through two rounds. Freshman Jason Millard is tied for seventh with a 1-over 145, followed by Chas Narramore (2-over 146) at No. 12, Rick Cochran (4-over 148) tied at 16th, and Craig Smith (6-over 150) tied for 21st. Nick Bailes is 7-over and tied for 25th.
Middle Tenn./Aldila Intercollegiate
Old Fort GC, Murfreesboro, Tenn.
Par-72, Second-round team scores
1 Middle Tennessee 294-287 581 +5
2 Southern Miss 291-292 583 +7
3 UALR 295-289 584 +8
4 Austin Peay 300-287 587 +11
5 Texas State 299-293 592 +16
6 Troy 297-296 593 +17
7 North Texas 305-291 596 +20
8 Western Kentucky 298-303 601 +25
9 Jacksonville State 305-303 608 +32
10 Oakland University 303-309 612 +36
11 Connecticut 312-314 626 +50
Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.
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