MCDERMOTT, Ohio – The Shawnee State men’s golf program obtained an even-par 72 from Brett Ruckel as well as a two-over 74 from Josh Zornes to lead the Bears to a fourth place showing in the eight-team Mid-South Conference Fall Tournament on Thursday afternoon at the Elks Country Club.
Shawnee State, who grabbed the aforementioned fourth place slot by shooting a collective score of 304, sits six strokes ahead of Georgetown and Campbellsville, who are currently tied for fifth place after Day One.
With their opening round score, the Bears sit just eight strokes behind second-place Lindsey Wilson and five back of Cumberlands (Ky.), who sits in the third position at the present time.
In shooting the aforementioned score of 72, Ruckel set a new round mark for himself on the opening day of the tournament by eclipsing his previous high of 75 that was set at the Georgetown Invitational this past spring.
Overall, the sophomore sits just five strokes back of Cumberland’s (Tenn.) Zach Polston in a tie for fourth place overall. Polston shot a 5-under par 67 to lead the 49-man field.
Zornes, however, doesn’t sit far behind Ruckel. The senior’s round of 74 currently has the Ironton, Ohio native in a tie for eighth place overall after the first day of action.
In doing so, Zornes has continued on another hot tear, as the experienced hand has seven straight rounds under 80 dating back to the Ohio-Chillicothe Invitational on April 10.
Brock Faulkner also turned in an impressive score for Shawnee State during the first day of the MSC Fall Tournament by shooting a six-over 78.
Faulkner, who is playing in just his second tournament overall in beginning his golf career with Bears this fall, currently sits in a tie for 23rd and is only three strokes back of the top 12.
Drew Oxley and A.J. Hamilton would round out the scoring for the Bears on the day as the pair matched each other shot for shot by grabbing a stroke of 80 on the afternoon. Both players currently sit in a tie for 33rd position after the first day of action.
Two Shawnee State players would also participate in the MSC Fall Tournament as individuals, with Ian O’Cull and Marshal Hall also recording scores on the afternoon.
O’Cull, who participated in his first round as a Bear on Thursday, placed in the 46th position in shooting a 14-over 86, while Hall, in his third round of the season, shot a 18-over 90 to conclude play for Shawnee State.
Behind Polston’s efforts, as well as Peyton Broyles’ 3-under 69 and Ryan Botts’ 1-under 71, the Bulldogs currently hold the team lead with an overall score of 286. The Blue Raiders sit 10 strokes back with their aforementioned team score of 296.
Shawnee State will return to action on Friday morning as the Bears will play another 18 holes to finish off the MSC Fall Tournament.
Following Friday’s action, Shawnee State will head to Campbellsville to play in the Campbellsville Invitational on Thursday, Oct. 8 and Friday, Oct. 9.
t4. Brett Ruckel – 72 (E)
t8. Josh Zornes – 74 (+2)
t23. Brock Faulkner – 78 (+6)
t33. Drew Oxley – 80 (+8)
t33. AJ Hamilton – 80 (+8)
46. Ian O’Cull* – 86 (+14)
48. Marshal Hall* – 90 (+18)
*Played as individual
1. Cumberland (Tenn.) – 286 (E)
2. Lindsey Wilson – 296 (+10)
3. Cumberlands (Ky.) – 299 (+13)
4. Shawnee State – 304 (+16)
T5. Georgetown – 310 (+22)
T5. Campbellsville – 310 (+22)
7. Pikeville – 315 (+27)
8. St. Catharine – 316 (+28)