Knoxville, Tenn. – Furman's Laura Wearn (-6) fired a four-under par 68 to grab a three-shot lead and help the Paladins climb into seventh place after round two action on Saturday in the Mercedes-Benz Intercollegiate at the par-72, 6,447-yard Holston Hills Country Club in Knoxville, Tenn.
The senior, who started her round at No. 10, used three birdies to post a three-under 33 on the back nine before carding a pair of birdies on the front nine en route to the low round of the weekend. The Charlotte, N.C., native finished with five birdies, 12 pars and just one bogey on the day to fashion a three-stroke lead over the University of Tennessee's Erica Popson (-3) entering Sunday's final round.
"Laura was just really solid and hit a lot of greens today" said first-year Furman head coach Kelley Hester. "This course sets up well for her, and I feel she's been playing really well and building up to being in the hunt going into the last day."
Furman (+19) climbed from 10th to seventh place with a seven-over 295 on Saturday, the Paladins' lowest round of the season. Freshman Stephanie Carlozzi (+2) joined Wearn at par or better with an even-par 72 to climb into a tie for 11th place while senior Alexa Rancourt (+10) recovered from an opening round 79 to notch a three-over 75.
"I'm really proud of the girls today," said Hester. "They've been working really hard and all the hard work is beginning to pay off."
Penn State (+4) holds a one-stroke lead over second place Tennessee and four-stroke lead on third place Purdue through 36 holes. The 16-team Mercedes-Benz Intercollegiate field includes six of the top 31 teams in the country and 13 golfers ranked among the nation's top 100.
Furman will tee off from No. 1 beginning at 9 a.m. on Sunday in final round play.
Full tournament results, statistics and live scoring for tomorrow's final round are available at www.golfstatresults.com.
7 Furman 300 295 595
1 Laura Wearn 70 68 138
T11 Stephanie Carlozzi 74 72 146
T53 Alexa Rancourt 79 75 154
T61 Aubrie Street 78 80 158
T69 Valentina Romero 78 83 161
T61 *Laura DeMarco 78 80 158
* - playing as individual