OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Kevin Kisner shot a bogey-free 5-under 65 -- his first under-par round of the spring season'to help Georgia take a five-stroke lead over Tennessee on Wednesday after the first round of the NCAA Division I tournament.
I know Ive been struggling, but I wasnt expecting anything less out of myself today, Kisner said. I tee it up every time expecting to shoot a 65. I might have surprised some other people, but I didnt surprise myself. I knew it was coming.
Georgia had a 6-under 274 total'counting the top four scores from the five-player squad'on the Caves Valley Golf Club course. Tennessee, the only other team to break par, was 1 under, followed by Arizona at 2 over and UNLV and Coastal Carolina at 4 over. Top-ranked Oklahoma State was 24th at 12 over.
Kisner shared the individual lead with Augusta States Major Manning.
Georgia Southerns Aron Price opened with a 66, and Tennessees Ross McGowan, Brigham Youngs Oscar Alvarez, Pepperdines Michael Putnam, Tulsas Mitch Cohlmia and Floridas James Vargas had 67s.
Defending champion Ryan Moore of UNLV, also the 2004 U.S. Amateur and U.S. Public Links winner, shot a 72. New Mexico States Spencer Levin, who tied for 13th last year in the U.S. Open, matched Moore with a 72.
Im used to grinding, Moore said. I just didnt do it very well this time.
Brendon Todd added a 68 for Georgia, Chris Kirk had a 69 and David Denham and Richard Scott shot 72s.
Its nice not having to try and dig out of a hole, Bulldogs coach Chris Haack said. With the field this good, getting ahead is a real bonus. This was a good start, and Id take three more days just like it. I reminded our guys to stay focused and remember that its a marathon and not a sprint. Weve got to play 72 holes. You cant win the tournament on the first day.
1, Georgia, 274. 2, Tennessee, 279. 3, Arizona, 282. 4 (tie),
UNLV and Coastal Carolina, 284. 6, Brigham Young, 285. 7 (tie),
Georgia Southern and Augusta State, 286. 9 (tie), SMU, Georgia
State and Wake Forest, 287. 12 (tie), Duke, Georgia Tech and
Arkansas, 288. 15 (tie), Florida, New Mexico and Washington, 289.
18 (tie), San Diego State, Southern California and Tulsa, 290. 21
(tie), Alabama, Kentucky and Arizona State, 291. 24, Oklahoma
State, 292. 25 (tie), Stanford and Texas A&M, 296. 27, Texas, 298.
28 (tie), Purdue and UCLA, 299. 30, Missouri, 300.
Top Individual Leaders
Kevin Kisner, Georgia 65
Major Manning, Augusta State 65
Aron Price, Georgia Southern 66
Oscar Alvarez, Brigham Young 67
Mitch Cohlmia, Tulsa 67
Ross McGowan, Tennessee 67
Michael Putnam, Pepperdine 67
James Vargas, Florida 67
Travis Esway, Arizona 68
Robert Gates, Texas A&M 68
Webb Simpson, Wake Forest 68
Brendon Todd, Georgia 68
Martin Ureta, North Carolina 68
Roberto Castro, Georgia Tech 69
Will Dodson, SMU 69
Dustin Johnson, Coastal Carolina 69
Ryan Keeney, UNLV 69
Chris Kirk, Georgia 69
Sean Moore, Wake Forest 69
Philip Pettitt, Tennessee 69
Ryan Blaum, Duke 70
Beau Glover, Arkansas 70
Andres Gonzales, UNLV 70
Mark Harrell, Alabama 70
John Holmes, Kentucky 70
Niklas Lemke, Arizona State 70
James Lepp, Washington 70
Zack Miller, Stanford 70
Alex Noren, Oklahoma State 70
David Palm, Georgia Southern 70
Matthew Rosenfeld, Texas 70
Michael Schachner, Duke 70