Smith leads by six at halfway point
MANCHESTER >> With the temperatures rising into the 90s, the second round scores at the 110th Vermont Amateur, taking place this week at the Ekwanok Country Club, similarly rose.
But for one player, he was as cool as ever.
Bryan Smith, a player out of the Jay Peak Golf Course, shot the only red number, a 2-under 68, to lead the field by six shots heading into today's third and fourth rounds.
"I'm not changing anything," said Smith, talking about his plan for today's third and fourth rounds. "I've got a good game plan and it hasn't failed me yet. I just have to keep doing the same things."
Smith birdied five holes, including No. 2, 4, 10, 14 and 15. Bogeys at 6, 7 and 12 kept the score from being even lower.
"I stole one on 15 with a 20-25 feet [putt]," Smith said. "I was left of the pin, it's not a big green. I dove it in and dropped it. I got one on 4 too, off the fringe."
One of the few players not to struggle on Wednesday was Logan Broyles. The 15-year-old, who played for Rutland High School and is representing Green Mountain National GC. After a 74 on Day 1, Broyles was second best for Day 2 with a 1-over 71 and second overall at 5-over.
Defending champion Alex Rainville had a bigger struggle on Day 2, finishing with a 76 to put him in third, eight shots back. Eric Lajeunesse, Drake Hull and Garren Poirier are 10 back at 9-over 149.
Eight of 15 locals made today's cut, which ended up at 18-over 158. The lowest score for the locals were 12-over 152, hit by three players: Ekwanok's Hans Albertsson and Walker Allen, along with Manchester Country Club's Dan Favreau.
"The course was tough today, I had to make a lot of putts," Favreau said. "If you missed spots today, the greens and the pins really punished you."
Favreau's only real bad hole in his 79 was a double bogey on the par-4 9th.
"I didn't hit driver well, I played from the fairway yesterday," Favreau said. "Tomorrow's a grind for sure, it's my first ever [amateur], first competitive golf, so I have an advantage that I'm not expecting much. It should be a lot of the same as [Wednesday]."
Allen shot a 77 on Wednesday, and he said he changed just about everything from the day before.
"I hit six greens yesterday, I had the first eight in a row today, so I was hitting it way better," Allen said. "But I had four 3-putts on the front [nine]. I was trying to keep it in good spots. The pace [of the green] scared me a little bit, so I was leaving putts short."
Allen said he's ready for 36 holes today and seeing where he ends up.
"It'll be fun to play 36," Allen said. "It'll be fun to play 36 and you can make up a lot of shots in that time."
Mount Anthony Country Club's Taylor Bellemare was next at 13-over 153, while 2011 BBA grad Cooper Bleakie, representing Manchester CC, was at 15-over 155. Manchester's Chris Antonez finished at 17-over 157 and Mike Rollyson, from Dorest Field Club, hit the cut line at 18-over 158.
Missing the cut were: Paul Heffernan (25-over), Craig Stevens (19-over), Thomas Deck (25-over), Hunter Caler (27-over), Logan Ripley (28-over), Keith Komline (29-over) and Shane Becker (30-over).
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