Belmont’s No. 1 Golfer, Daniel Smith, entered the 2011 Atlantic Sun Men’s Golf Championship with only three top-10 finishes on the season and seven rounds at par or better. However, things have been on the upswing for Daniel as he wraps up his senior year after recently earning the title of the Belmont School of Business Student of the Year.
To go along with his academic accolade, Smith fired a 69 in the opener on Monday and followed that with a 68 in day two to put the Bournemouth, England native in second place – one stroke behind Kennesaw State’s Jeff Karlsson – going into the Wednesday finale.
“Daniel tried to prepare like any other golf tournament by staying in his routine and not do anything different once he got out on the golf course,” Belmont head coach Scott Flynn stated. “I know how excited he was to come back and play in the conference championship again.”
Smith’s hot putter sank eight birdies in the first two days and has given him a chance to etch his name into the Belmont record books by posting the best individual performance by a Bruin, besting Jeff Lanier’s seventh-place finish in 2005 as well as lead the Bruins to a new program-best finish. On three occasions the Bruins have finished in sixth - most recently in 2005.
“When you are out there and you’re in a good rhythm things start going well and eventually a couple of the putts fall and before you know it you are a few under part and are just riding the wave,” Smith said of his first two rounds.
However the 2011 A-Sun Men’s Golf Championship Final Round plays out, Smith can take solace in his improved putting and first two rounds once his college career has wrapped up.
“It would be great to put in a good performance tomorrow," he said. "If I play as well as I can and take it one shot at a time and try to hole some putts and see where we stand at the end of the day.”