MUSKOGEE, Okla. - Harding men's golf tied its second-best 18-hole score in program history in the second round of the 18th Annual NSU Golf Classic on Monday and found itself in the midst of some of the top-ranked teams in Division II golf. The final 18 holes will be played Tuesday.
After shooting 291 in Monday's opening round at the par-71, 6,729-yard Muskogee Country Club, the Bisons shot 283 in the second round. It was Harding's best round since opening the 2014 GAC Preview with a 283 and only four strokes off the school record.
Harding's 36-hole score of 574 has the Bisons tied for sixth in the 18-team field. The Bisons are just four strokes back of 12th-ranked Central Missouri and are tied with 49th-ranked Henderson State. Harding leads 25th-ranked Central Oklahoma by one stroke and 44th-ranked Southeastern Oklahoma by 12.
Arkansas Tech, ranked 48th, leads the tournament at 14-under, 554. Lindenwood is second at 562.
Leading the charge for Harding was senior Alex Williamson, who shot 1-under 70 in the first round and even-par 71 in the second. His 141 total has him tied for 12th of 98 golfers. They were his 15th and 16th round of par or better in his career, extending his Harding record.
Sophomore Edward Axlund, playing only his third tournament as a Bison, shot 73 and 71 and is tied for 25th at 144. Junior Juan Luis Sanchez is one stroke back at 145 and is tied for 32nd.
Sophomore Mason Banger struggled in the first round and shot 77. In the second round, he rallied to shoot 69, one stroke off his career best. He jumped 39 spots in round two and is tied for 37th.
Ryan Williamson, a sophomore, is tied for 57th at 149.
Austin Smith of Arkansas Tech leads the tournament at 9-under.