June 2, 2005
OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- This is how well things are going for the Georgia men's golf team at the NCAA Championships. The Bulldogs posted a second-round score of 4-over-par and actually extended their lead.
Georgia reached the midway point of the NCAAs on Thursday boasting a 7-shot advantage over Tennessee at the Caves Valley Golf Club. The Bulldogs had a second-round tally of 4-over 284, giving them a two-day total of 1-under 558, the only red figure through 36 holes.
After the first round on Wednesday, the Bulldogs were up by five shots on Tennessee. Georgia coach Chris Haack reminded his team that it had not won the tournament on the basis of the first round, saying the 72-hole event "is a marathon, not a sprint." The Bulldogs took that to heart, giving all their attention to Caves Valley's par-70, 7,131-yard layout and their 29 opponents in the field on Thursday.
"You've got to put aside thinking about leading or winning and just take it one shot at a time," said junior Richard Scott, who paced the Bulldogs with a 1-under 69 on Thursday. "On this course and with these teams playing, if you lose focus, it can bite you. We're just worrying about each shot. That's what we're focusing on."
"If you had told me after two rounds we'd be under par, I would have taken that without a doubt," Haack said. "I'm proud of the way the guys are playing. They are all focused on the task at hand. They are doing a good job of staying in the present and not getting emotional. When you keep your emotions in check, it's going to help you."
Haack believes a players-only meeting called by team captain Kevin Kisner before the first round on Wednesday is paying dividends. Said Haack, "I don't know what was said in the meeting, but I like the formula. They can have another one if they want to."