First round leader Erik Barnes of Marion (67) carded a second day 71 to hold on to his lead at the Indiana Amateur at Rock Hollow Golf Club in Peru. He stood alone through the morning wave of tee times, but Richard Lamb of South Bend fired a 66 to add to his 72 and share the top of the leaderboard. Both players seek their first IGA title. “The best I have finished in the State Am is tied for fourth at Broadmoor Country Club,” Barnes said.
Barnes' other achievements this year include two individual wins as a men’s golf team member at Austin Peay State University and being named 2008-09 Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year. He also qualified for the Regional US Open qualifier after making it out of the local qualifier at French Lick Resort with a 70. The Indiana Open added him to the field after he tied for first at his Rozella Ford Golf Course qualifier with a 68.
The lowest round of Barnes’ career is 64 at Xavier’s tournament, and he feels it is possible again in this event. “If you are smart out there and hit it in play, you can shoot under par,” he said of Rock Hollow. “You find yourself with a lot of wedges in hand, and so if you make putts you can take it low.” He did just that the first day with six birdies.
Contesting the lead is Erich Johnston of Fort Wayne and Keith Blythe of Decatur two strokes behind at 140. Brad Smith of Peru, son of Rock Hollow Professional Todd Smith, carded two 72’s to stay in the hunt at his home course.
The original 156 amateur field was cut to the low 60 scores
and ties after 36 holes, keeping the 65 players who combined for a 151 total or
lower coming back for two more rounds of stroke play.