Cyclone golfers move into sole possession of fourth place at Austin Regional

Ruben Sondjaja, junior in management, poses for a portrait Wednesday, Sept. 30 at the ISU Golf Performance Center in Ames, Iowa. Sondjaja will be Iowa State’s No. 1 starter at the Bridgestone Golf Collegiate on Oct. 25-26 due to the absence of Nick Voke, who is representing New Zealand at the Nomura Cup.

Aaron Marner

Two-thirds of the NCAA golf Austin Regional is complete, and Iowa State sits in a great position.

The top five teams — out of the 14 total teams competing at the Regional in Austin, Texas — qualify for the NCAA Championship, which will take place May 26-31 in Sugar Grove, Illinois.

The Cyclones followed up Monday’s 290 team score with a 292 on Tuesday. Iowa State held sole possession of fourth place at the end of its round.

After day one, there was good news and bad news for the Cyclones and their chances to make the NCAA Championship.

The good news for Iowa State?

The Cyclones were in fourth place after day one with a team score of 290.

The bad news?

Two other teams scored a 290 on day one, with another team at 291 and several more within a few strokes of the Cyclones.

All told, there were seven different teams within six strokes of Iowa State after Monday.

Tuesday was a different story.

Iowa State initially fell down the leaderboard, thanks to solid performances from Arizona State and College of Charleston.

But on the back nine, Iowa State made a push back towards the top.

Sitting in eighth place as they made the turn to the back nine, the Cyclones fought their way back into fourth place again.

The story of the day was Cyclone senior Nick Voke.

Voke followed up an even-par 71 Monday with the best score of the 75-man field on Tuesday, scoring a four-under par 67 in round two.

Voke moved from a tie for 10th place after day one into a tie for No. 1 at the time his second round finished.

Junior Denzel Ieremia also shot a 71 on day one. He fell to the middle of the pack with a +8 Tuesday, but was picked up by his teammate, senior Ruben Sondjaja.

Sondjaja shot a 73 Monday followed by a 72 in round two, to move into a tie for No. 21 at the time his round ended.

Freshman Tripp Kinney recorded a 74 (+3) Tuesday after shooting 75 Monday to keep pace with the middle of the pack, and freshman Sam Vincent shot a 79 on day two to move to 12-over for the tournament.

The top five individual scorers from non-qualifying teams also make the Championship. That means if Iowa State fails to qualify for the Championship as a team, Voke and others could still play in the Championship at the end of the month, depending on their final round Wednesday.