ROUND ROCK, Texas – Two familiar faces are vying for the Heartland Conference Championship.

St. Mary’s seniors Matt Vela and Jeff Rein are in the hunt for the individual crown after Monday’s first and second rounds of the Heartland Conference Men’s Golf Championship, where Vela shot a 1-under 143 and Rein carded an even-par 144.

Vela (Sr., San Antonio) is in third place, while Rein (Sr., San Antonio) is tied for fourth.

Their efforts helped put the Rattlers in fifth place with a team score of 595.

Newman’s Nick Ver Elst leads the field with a 3-under 141, helping position the Jets atop the field entering Tuesday’s third and final round at the Teravista Golf Club. Newman registered a 579.

St. Mary’s Sam Jernigan (Jr., San Antonio) shot 151, while Chris Becker (Jr., San Antonio) carded a 157. Tim Paiz (So., San Antonio) shot 174.

Vela took home the medalist honors at the Heartland Conference Championship last year, while Rein won the tournament as a sophomore in 2009. The two have teamed up to finish 1-2 at each of the past two conference championships. St. Mary’s placed second as a team last season.

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