BRYAN, Texas — After 36 holes on the challenging course at Traditions Club Saturday, the Texas A&M men’s golf team sits in second place and just one shot off team leader LSU.
The Aggies (297-295=592) will enter Sunday’s final round at 16-over par and will be paired alongside LSU (298-293=591, +15) and third-place Texas Tech (302-295=597, +21).
“It was a grind out there today and I thought our guys did pretty well overall,” Texas A&M head coach J.T. Higgins said. “We made way too many big numbers for us and the standard we hold ourselves to. The course is set up really tough and the wind out of the north makes things difficult. If you’re not focused and committed to every shot, you’re going to make some big numbers and unfortunately we did that a few times today.”
Sophomore Ben Crancer (71-72=143, -1) led the charge for the Aggies on Saturday by opening the day with a one-under par round of 71 that featured six birdies. The Kirkwood, Mo., native stands in second place individually, just two shots back of leader Brandon Hagy (71-70=141, -3) of California.
“Obviously, Ben played great today,” Higgins added. “Coach (Brian) Kortan spent the day with him so he did a much better job of coaching than I did. I was actually in the group in front of Ben and he was in the fairway all day and gave himself a lot of birdie looks. He was really patient today and stuck to his game plan and that’s what you’ve got to do out there to be successful.”
Junior Greg Yates (74-72=146, +2) also stands in the top five, holding a share of fifth at two-over par.
Sophomore Andrew Lister (76-75=151, +7) finished the day with a share of 23rd while fellow Aggie underclassman Adrià Arnaus (76-76=152, +8) is just one shot back in 26th. Senior Johannes Veerman (88-83=171, +27) rounded out the A&M line-up in a tie for 70th.
The tournament will conclude Sunday morning when the field begins teeing off at 7:30 a.m. The first golfers in the Texas A&M line-up will begin their final round at 8:40 a.m. on hole No. 1.
“We just need to play great golf tomorrow and we’ll be in a position to bring home a win,” Higgins said. “Really what it comes down to is putting your ball in position off the tee and playing smart with your approach shots. If you do those things you’re going to give yourself some birdie looks and ensure the worst score you’re going to make is par. That’s really easy to say but tough to do on a challenging course like this that is set up for a championship.”
A quartet of Aggie are competing in the event as individuals with Ty Dunlap (78-72=150, +6) highlighting the group in a tie for 20th. Also participating were Ryan Kelley (79-76=155, +11), Jade Scott (77-78=155, +11) and Charlie Bennell (84-78=162, +18).