October 3, 2011

Hot Start Vaults the Saints Atop the Leaderboard at Montevallo

Contact: Steve Cunha, sjcunh2033@northgeorgia.edu

CALERA, AL – The North Georgia men's golf team shot a school record aggregate score of 293 to race out to a first round lead at the Montevallo Invitational held at the par-71 Timberline Golf Club.

The Saints capitalized on ideal playing conditions to shoot their lowest team score of the fall season. Three of the four players to score for North Georgia either tied or set personal bests en route to a four shot lead after the opening round.

Birmingham Southern sits four shots back with a team score of 297 and host Montevallo is in third place just one shot ahead of fourth place Catawba College.

Landon Michelson of Birmingham Southern shot a three-under-par 68 to jump out to the individual leader after the first day of action, while UAB's Wilson McDonald is just one shot off the pace. Montevallo's Andrew Lowery holds sole possession of third place just one stroke ahead of North Georgia's Howard Duffin and Grant Rish who are tied for fourth.

As a team, the Saints had the most birdies (16), lowest score on the par 3's (+10) and were tied for third in par 5 scoring (+2) after the first round of the three round Montevallo Invitational.

Duffin and Rish continued their strong fall campaigns, shooting even-par 71's. Duffin leads all scorers in the opening round with seven birdies and has shot in the 70's in all six of his rounds this year, 

For the second consecutive week, Rish carded a career low round as a member of the Saints. Rish led all scorers in par 5 scoring, shooting two-under-par, while recording four birdies.

In just his second career collegiate tournament, Aaron George matched his low score in the opening round of last week's Jay Jennison Memorial Tournament by firing a three-over-par 74, while carding three birdies.

Will Brackett opened his first collegiate tournament with a six-over-par 77 to round out the scoring for the Saints. Brackett also recorded a team-high 12 pars in the first round. Ben Jarrard shot a 39 on the back nine and carded an 11-over-par 82.

The Montevallo Invitational is contested at the 6,745 yard par-71 Timberline Golf Club, which has a rating of 72.3 and a slope rating of 126 on Bermuda grass. The Timberline Golf Club was designed by Jerry Pate and first opened in 2002. 

North Georgia returns to the links tomorrow when they play final round at the Montevallo Invitational.