North Florida Leads After Competitive Opening Day of 31st Schenkel E-Z-GO Invitational
STATESBORO, Ga. – Four teams battled for first-place through the final holes on the first day of the 31st Annual Schenkel E-Z-GO Invitational (March 19). North Florida took the turn at 4-under and finished the round 3-under with a team aggregated 285 to claim a one stroke lead in first place. The three-day tournament is being contested on the par 72, 6,962 yard Forest Heights Country Club.
The top five teams all lead each other by a mere one stroke. UNF bests second-place Virginia as the Cavaliers carded a 2-under team 286 through the opening round. Mississippi claims third-place at 287 to round out the three teams with opening rounds in the red. Auburn shot an even-par 288 to stand in fourth, while North Carolina State completes the top five at 289 (+1).
Will Collins of Virginia carded the day’s lowest round to stand atop the individual leaderboard. Collins shot an almost perfect round of 12 pars, five birdies and one bogey for a 4-under 68. The Cavalier helped lead Virginia to a second-place finish on the day and leads second-place Bank Vongvanij of Florida and J.C. Horne of North Florida by one stroke.
For the day, host institution Georgia Southern carded a 292 (+4) to stand tied for eighth heading into the second round. The Eagles exploded on the front nine, making the turn at 8-under using 14 birdies. Redshirt-freshman Florian Sander (Bregenz, Austria) led the way for GS firing four birdies over the final five holes of the front nine to make the turn at 3-under.
A difficult back nine proved costly for Georgia Southern who finished the day at 4-over after three Eagles bogeyed the opening hole. The Eagle five-man lineup split scores of 72s and 74s on the day with two carding even-pars and three posting matching 74s.
“The team definitely came out firing early and shot an excellent front nine,” said head coach Larry Mays. “We struggled on the back nine and came up a little short to finish. But we are looking forward to the rest of the weekend, refocusing and posting two good rounds.
I’m proud of Ryan [Zabroske] for hanging in there and adjusting after having to switch clubs when he discovered his was broken just prior to his tee time.”
Ryan Zabroske (Alpharetta, Ga.) and Matt Deal (Statesboro, Ga.) carded identical 72s to claim a portion of 20th-place. Deal disbursed two birdies on the front nine with two bogeys on the back nine for his 72. Meanwhile, Zabroske opened the day with a bogey on hole one, but erased the 1-over tally with a triplet of birdies on holes 6-8 for a 2-under 34 front half. Two bogeys on the back nine evened the senior’s scorecard for the day.
Three Eagles finished T36 with 2-over 74s. Senior Spence Fulford (Rocky Mount, N.C.) rebounded from a double bogey to open the first round with three birdies intermixed with a bogey to complete the front at even-par. Fulford launched a birdie on hole 14, but three bogeys on the back nine left the Eagle at 2-over 74.
Junior Joe Monte (Chantilly, Va.) expunged a bogey on three with a birdie on six and followed with another birdie on nine for a 1-under 35 front nine tally. A 3-over back nine left the Eagle standing at 2-over for the day. Sander took the turn at 3-under but struggled on the back nine to finish with a 2-over 74.
Competing as an individual, junior Logan Blondell (Lakeland, Fla.) displayed the best performance for the Eagles, carding a 1-under 71. The Eagle finished tied for ninth after a birdie on 18 and three birdies on six, nine and 13 to erase three bogeys.
Georgia Southern is paired with Vanderbilt and Virginia for the second round and tees off first at 9 a.m. on the front nine.
Fans can follow tournament action via live scoring at www.golfstat.com and follow Georgia Southern Radio Network’s Chris Blair on the official tournament twitter page at www.twitter.com/schenkelinvite.
- Category: Golf
- Published on Friday, 19 March 2010 18:15