Smith Jump Into Top-80 After Two Rounds at NCAA Championship

Zach Smith (Photo by Tony Mastres)
Zach Smith (Photo by Tony Mastres)

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – UC Santa Barbara senior Zach Smith finished his round at the NCAA Championship early on Saturday, carding a 2-over par 74 at the Blessings Golf Club to move to 8-over par 152 after two rounds.

When Smith finished his round, he was tied for 90th-place, but as the rest of the field completed its rounds, he moved up several spots, finishing in a 13-way tie for 77th-place in the field of 156. The Pleasanton, Calif., native was one-over par on both the front nine and back nine.

"Zach played a good solid round of golf today with no glaring mistakes," said UCSB head coach Steve Lass. "Unfortunately, on a course as difficult as The Blessings, a mistake-free round of golf isn't a guarantee of a par or better round. His iron shots weren't quite close enough and his putts haven't been dropping. I'm hoping and expecting him to put it all together tomorrow."

Smith is 14 shots back of the tournament leader, Austin Eckroat of Oklahoma State, who completed the second round with a 6-under par 138. Eckroat's teammate, Matthew Wolff, the No. 1 player in the nation, is in second-place tie with Cal's Collin Morikawa at 5-under par. In all, just eight of the 156 players are under par after two rounds. 

Oklahoma State easily leads the team competition at 10-under par, 12 shots ahead of Stanford and 19 up on Texas A&M. 

The third round will be played Sunday and the top-85 players will advance to Monday's fourth round.