COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The No. 9 Texas A&M men's golf team vaulted to the top of the leaderboard with a record-setting round at the Blessings Collegiate Invitational on Tuesday at the University of Arkansas' Blessings Golf Club.
With all four scorers at par or better, the Aggies scorched the course with a 15-under par score of 273, which broke the tournament record by five strokes (old record of 278 by Arkansas in 2021). The Aggies 36-hole score of 565 matches the Blessings Collegiate record, also set by the Razorbacks in 2021.
"It was just a great team effort, but the job's not finished," Aggie head coach Brian Kortan said. "We need to put another good round together tomorrow, which we can do by doing the same things that we did today and that's executing shots, playing the right way and just trusting what we do.
"We were just better all around today, and we still made some doubles. This golf course is challenging. There's not a shot out there that you can take a breather on. The guys strung a lot of great shots together and kind of fed off each other a little bit. It was really good golf. From A to Z, from one to 18, we put a lot of great shots together."
Leading the way was junior Daniel Rodrigues, who surged into the individual lead on the strength of a 6-under 66. With rounds of 69 and 66, Rodrigues' 36-hole total of 135 was the second-lowest in Blessings tournament history. He enters the third and final round with a one-shot lead over Kansas' Gunnar Broin.
"Our goal as a team is to play efficient and clean, and Dani is doing those things," Kortan said. "He's making a few putts and executing at a really high level. Rodi is a really good player. We're fortunate that he's on our side. He's put a lot of good shots together and he's sticking to the game plan."
The biggest mover on the individual leaderboard was sophomore Phichaksn Maichon, who used a 5-under 67 to jump a whopping 28 spots into a tie for sixth place at 1-under. Also at 1-under for the tournament, senior Sam Bennett chipped in a 4-under 68. Wrapping up the Aggie scorers was senior William Paysse with an even-par 72 as he climbed into a tie for ninth place. Freshman Jaime Montojo carded a 1-over 73 and moved up four spots into a tie for 22nd.
The Aggies take a 12-stroke lead into the final round and tee off from the 1st hole beginning at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday. The final round of the Blessings Collegiate Invitational, which features all five players from each school playing in the same groups, will be televised from 3:30-6:30 p.m. on the Golf Channel.
The No. 2 Texas A&M women’s golf team moved up one spot into third in the second round at the Blessings Collegiate Invitational at the par-72, 6,452-yard Blessings Golf Club on Tuesday.
“We are in position,” head coach Gerrod Chadwell said. “The finish made us feel better. We had some momentum heading into the final few holes but lost a little bit of focus on a couple of them. However, we bounced back really well. Our finish really gave us chance heading into tomorrow. We know that things can flip on one hole. I love this team. Now that the competitive juices are flowing, I know tomorrow is going to be a lot of fun.”
The Aggies (301-293—594) carded a 5-over 293 in the second round that brought their two-round total to 18-over 594, climbing one spot on the team leaderboard. The Maroon & White faced a 14-stroke deficit from the top spot heading into the day, but after day two were only three strokes behind first place and No. 7 Ole Miss (+15). Second place is occupied by day one’s leader, No. 11 Mississippi State (+17), and No. 8 Clemson (+23) and No. 49 UCLA (+23) round out the top five.
Blanca Fernández García-Poggio (78-71—149) carried A&M in the second round, carding a team-low 1-under 71. The senior moved into a tie for 12th after knocking down five birdies. Jennie Park (74-72—146) leads the team on the individual leaderboard, holding a share of fourth heading into the final day. Park shot even par on day two with birdies on Nos. 7, 11 and 12.
Zoe Slaughter (82-74—156) bounced back after a tough first round, going 2-over 74 in the second 18. Slaughter stood in a tie for 36th. Hailee Cooper was the final counting score for the Aggies, recording a 4-over 76. The Montgomery, Texas, native held a share of 29th.
Rounding out the lineup was Adela Cernousek (71-80—151) who posted an 8-over 80 in the second round. Cernousek tied for 22nd going into the final round.