ORLANDO, Fla. – Sophomore Danny Gianniny fired the best round in an Atlantic 10 Championship by any Bonnies player in five years and the St. Bonaventure golf team remained among the leaders following Saturday's second round at the Grand Cypress Golf Club.
Gianniny carded a stellar round of 4-under 68 to move into a tie for sixth on the individual leaderboard with an even-par 144 total through 36 holes. As a team, the Bonnies posted 291 on Saturday and their 593 total for the two days is good for fifth overall, just seven shots back of leader VCU.
The crowded leaderboard sees VCU's 586 leading the way as the final round looms Sunday while Davidson (587), George Washington (590), Saint Joseph's (592) and St. Bonaventure all remain in striking distance.
"We talked about how you can't win the tournament after 36 holes, but you can certainly lose it. We've now set ourselves up to make a run at the title," St. Bonaventure head coach Ryan Swanson said. "We just have to limit the mistakes and have a chance on the back nine which is our goal at every tournament."
Gianniny's round led the way – he drained five birdies on the day and his eight for the weekend are just one off the most by any player in the tournament. His round included just one blemish – a bogey on the par-4 third hole as he played the opening nine in 1-under before coming home in 3-under 33 on the back nine.
"Danny has been terrific and more focused than ever, getting himself in situations to make the game really easy," Swanson said. "He is taking what the course is giving him and executing wonderfully. I'm proud of him and all the guys for battling a little adversity primarily on holes 7 and 11 and bouncing back with some key birdies late to keep us close."
Gianniny's round was the best by any Bonnies player in the conference championship since current assistant coach Josh Stauffer also posted 68 in the 2014 edition. Prior to that, no Bonnies player had not gone that low at the A-10 championship since Josh Anderson's 68 in 2006.
The Bona sophomore is five shots off the lead of 5-under 139 delivered by Davidson's Jack Lang (68-71) while Logan Lowe of George Washington, Connor Messick of George Mason and Ian Peng of VCU are all 2-under.
Three Bonnies remain in the individual top-20 – senior Brent Morgan (74-73/147) is in a tie for 13th after his 1-over effort on Saturday. He had three birdies and worked around an eight on the par-5 11th for another solid round.
"Brent was a swing away from a perfect round and is looking forward to one last go-around tomorrow," Swanson said. "Matt only had three mistakes today and usually that is ok but this course demands perfection and he is also hungry to post one more low round and end his career with a bang."
Christian Chapman also had a bounce back effort of 76, three shots lower than his opening round.
Sunday's final round gets underway at 7:30 a.m.
1. VCU – 586
2. Davidson – 587
3. George Washington – 590
4. Saint Joseph's – 592
5. St. Bonaventure – 593
6. George Mason – 596
7. Dayton – 597
8. Richmond – 602
9. Rhode Island – 603
10. La Salle – 621
11. Fordham – 644
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