DAYTON — Lorens Chans of Los Angeles, Calif. shot the low round of the tournament with a 6-under par 66 to break a 4-way log jam and take the 36-hole lead in Stage One Web.com Tour Qualifying at Dayton Valley Golf Club. Chans is at 8-under, 136 total.
Jimmy Makloski of Pueblo, Colo., one of the first-round co-leaders, fired a 3-under 69 for a 7-under, 134 total that puts him in solo second. S.J. Park of La Habra, Calif. carded a 4-under 68 and is tied for third at 5-under 139 with Ben Geyer of Arbuckle, Calif. who shot 2-under 70.
Jonny Baxter, Pleasanton, Calif., another first-round co-leader and Johnny Ruiz, Camarillo, Calif, are tied for fifth place at 4-under 140. Ruiz carded a 4-under 68 and Baxter shot an even par 72.
Former Nevada Wolf Pack golfer Kaleb Gorbahn of Reno fired a 5-under 67 and 2-under 142 total, to charge back into contention in a 7-way tie for 9th place. Trent Virden of Reno slipped two shots with a 2-over 74 and is at 2-over 146 that is in a nine-way tie for 31st. Australian Grant Booth, who holds the Wolf Pack career scoring record, bounced back from a disastrous first round and improved 12 shots with an even par 72.
“It was calmer today but there was still some wind from the opposite direction than yesterday,” said Chan, who improved his score by 4 strokes over the first round. “I hit it closer and made some putts.”
Chan made it to the Web.com Tour Qualifying finals last year after advancing from Dayton in the First Stage. He narrowly missed getting his Web.com card for this year.
“The greens are softer this year, so you can be aggressive and go for pins,” he said. “I played in the last group in the final round last year and that’s where I want to be again.”
Makloski echoed Chan’s aggressive sentiment going into the last two rounds.
“The pins are in tough positions and tough to get at, so you have to be aggressive,” said the former Colorado State golfer playing in his second consecutive Dayton Q-school. “My plan is to keep shooting in the 60’s.”
While happy with the 5-under outcome, Gorbahn felt he could have gone even lower on the day. “I left a couple of shots out there for sure, and I made too many bogeys,” said the long-hitting Canadian. “But the difference between today and yesterday is that I didn’t make any big numbers.
“My attitude was poor yesterday and I got down on myself for making mistakes,” he explained. “I decided I needed to be more positive and keep my head up. I bogeyed the first hole but stayed positive and was able to get some momentum going.”
Gorbahn eagled the par 5 third hole and birdied the par 3 No. 4 by nearly holing his tee shot to flip the script. He then went 4-under through the first five holes on the back 9 to complete the round that he described as, “Definitely a step in the right direction.”
A faulty putter kept Virden from moving up the leaderboard. “It was a rough day, I hit it okay but couldn’t get the ball in the hole and missed birdie putts all day,” he said. “I still think I can shoot something in red numbers the next two days. I just need to putt better.”
If the tournament ended today the qualifying score would be even par with 25 players advancing to the Second Stage. Fifteen players are within three strokes of the cutline number.
With more benign weather conditions, the field had an overall second round scoring average of 72.48 nearly two strokes lower than the first round. The 36-hole average moved up down one stroke to 73.47.
The 22 low scores and ties after Friday’s final round of the 72-hole tournament will advance to Second Stage Web.com Tour Qualifying at five sites in November. Players advancing to the second stage will play to make the Web.com Qualifying School Final where they will vie for a spot on the 2019 Web.com Tour.