GREEENSBURG, Pa. – Following the best team score during the tournament's first two days, the Bentley University Falcons will head into Saturday's final round of the NCAA Division II East/Atlantic Regional in first place.
The Falcons, who began the day tied for fourth, shot a 294 Friday at the Totteridge Golf Course and own a two-day score of 598. They lead Southern New Hampshire by one stroke, Wilmington University (Del.) by three and fourth-place Franklin Pierce University by eight.
The top three teams will qualify for the NCAA Division II Championships, which will be held May 20-24 at The Resort at Glade Springs in Daniels, W.V.
Simione birdied three of the last six holes and is along in eighth place with a 77-71-148. Ethier is right behind him in the individual standings with a 77-72-149. He started fast with birdies on three of his first eight holes.
Junior Robert Falconer (Mechanicsburg, Pa./Cumberland Valley HS) shot a second-day 74 and is tied for 13th with a 76-74-150. Through the first 36 holes, he leads the 108-player field in pars with 29.
Also competing for the Falcons are sophomore Ellis Yoder (Fort Wayne, Ind./Homestead HS), who is tied for 24th (74-79-153) and senior Doug Kulikowski (Pittsford, N.Y./Pittsford Sutherland HS), who is tied for 38th (78-77-155).
Bentley's day two success was impressive considering the course, according to coach Mickey Herron. "Scores were so high because of hilly, lightning fast greens, coupled with today's hole positions which were frankly as difficult as I have seen in a while. It's a big course, designed by Rees Jones, and played very long as well since overnight rains softened the fairways."
Southern New Hampshire's Matt Paradis is at the top of the individual leaderboard by eight strokes after turning in an impressive 67-70-137.
Bentley leads the regional in par-3 score (3.20), par-4 score (4.17) and total pars (113).
The Falcons will be in the final group to tee off on Saturday, along with Southern New Hampshire and Wilmington, beginning at 12:50 pm.