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Keegan McKinney is the top Cardinal in a tie for 19th.
Photo by: Jim Dostie
Vandy Leads Talis Park Challenge, Cardinals 12th
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NAPLES, Fla. -- Vanderbilt is the only team under par after two rounds on a blustery Sunday at the inaugural Talis Park Challenge hosted by the Ball State men’s golf team.

There were only three team rounds better than 290 on Sunday and the Commodores managed two of them. Vandy is 4 under par at 572 (283-289) and will take a 20-shot lead into Monday’s final round at Talis Park Golf Club.

Wichita State (+16) is second, while Notre Dame (+18), Austin Peay (+21) and FGCU (+22) round out the top five in the 14-team field.

Vanderbilt’s Charlie Ewing holds the individual lead at 3 under, leading four players under par. Indiana’s Hugo Menendez, competing as an individual, is second at 2 under, while Vanderbilt’s Carson Jacobs and Toledo’s Chris Selfridge are tied for third at 1 under.

Temperatures were in the 80’s Sunday with sunny skies, but windy conditions and fast greens made for a challenging day on the par-72 layout. The wind was blowing at more than 20 miles per hour throughout the day with gusts of more than 30.

Ball State hung in the middle of the pack with a 303 in round one, but a 318 in the second round left the Cardinals in 12th place at 621 (+45).

Freshman Keegan McKinney posted a pair of 75’s and leads the Cardinals in a tie for 19th place on the individual leaderboard at 6 over par (150). McKinney was second in the field with 10 birdies, five in each round, but also made 12 bogeys and two double bogeys.

McCormick Clouser is tied for 29th at 8 over par. The junior turned in the Cardinals’ best opening round with an even-par 72 but closed with an 80 in the afternoon.

Tyler Merkel sits at 158 (76-82) through the first two rounds, while James Blackwell at 161 (80-81) and Zach Yinger at 173 (89-84) round out the lineup.

Albert Jennings, playing as an individual, owns a 36-hole score of 159 (78-81).

Monday’s final round will begin with an 8:30 a.m. shotgun start and feature live scoring at birdiefire.com. Ball State will play with Indiana and Northern Illinois.

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