Big numbers plagued the Central College scorecard Wednesday as the Dutch struggled to hold on to a spot in the top 15 after the first two rounds of the NCAA Division III men’s golf championships. Central battled the par-72, 6,926-yard Mission Inn and Resort El Campeon course for a 317 after turning in a 302 on the par-72, 6,895-yard Las Colinas Tuesday. That dropped the Dutch from a tie for 12th place to 24th at 302-317—620, 18 shots away from the top 15 cut and a berth in the final two rounds of the 72-hole tournament.
Freshman Adam Squires finished Wednesday’s round tied for 33rd at (72-77) 149. He was one stroke away from the individual cut, which takes the top six golfers not on a team in the top 15. Justin Livingston was tied for sixth after Tuesday and closed at (71-81) 152. Matt Vegter shot a (80-79) 159, Brent Goodenow had a (80-80) 160 and Brent Messmore carded a (82-82) 165. Oglethorpe is the team leader at the midway point with 285-292—577. Freshman Anthony Maccaglia of Oglethorpe continues his hold at the top of the individual standings at 68-71—139.
Central was making its 31st appearance at the national tournament. Only Methodist edges the Dutch in NCAA championships with 32 appearances. Central won seven tournaments this year, including its 30th Iowa Conference title. The Dutch lose Goodenow, Messmore and Vegter to graduation. All three golfers were team co-captains, Iowa Conference performers and two-time NCAA participants.