Gagne Leads Men's Golf on Day 1 in Arizona
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – LSU All-American and defending Maui Jim Intercollegiate individual champion Luis Gagne set the early pace for the Tigers in their own title defense as he fired a 1-under par 71 in Friday’s opening round at Desert Forest Golf Club to crack the Top 10 of the leaderboard in a tie for seventh place.
Gagne finds himself just three shots off the lead after Kent State’s Gisli Sveinbergsson posted a first-round 4-under 68. He was crowned the 2016 champion with his career-best score of 17-under par 196.
The Tigers, who won the inaugural Maui Jim Intercollegiate with a school-record score of 41-under par at Mirabel Golf Club last fall, opened their team-title defense with a score of 5-over 293 to tie Lipscomb for sixth in the team standings after 18 holes. Kent State was the only team in the field to break par on the day with a team round of 7-under par 281 to grab an eight-shot lead over Arizona State and Minnesota.
Sophomore Philip Barbaree also helped lead the No. 7-ranked Tigers in Friday’s opening round as he holed out with an even-par 72 to finish the day in a tie for 11th place on the leaderboard and just one shot outside of the Top 10. LSU also counted scores of 1-over 73 by freshman Trey Winstead and matching 5-over 77s by junior Nathan Jeansonne and freshman Jacob Bergeron.
Gagne Tops Tigers
With the Tigers teeing off from the back nine to start the round, Gagne twice made birdie to move to 1-under par on the day at the par-four 13th and par-five 16th only to give a shot back with bogeys at the par-four 15th and par-five 18th. He then birdied the par-four first and par-four fourth holes to get to 2-under par and finished with a team-low 71 following a bogey at the par-three eighth.
After closing out the Carpet Capital Collegiate Classic with a 3-under 69, Barbaree finished at par or better for the second-straight round with an even-par 72 as he canceled four birdies with four bogeys on Friday.
Winstead joined Gagne and Barbaree in the Top 20 of the leaderboard through 18 holes as he tied for 20th place with a 1-over 73 on the day. He jumped out to 3-under par through his first six holes with birdies on Nos. 12, 14 and 15 before finishing at 1-over par for the round. Bergeron and Jeansonne tied one another for 44th place with matching rounds of 5-over 77 to open the championship.
After turning at 3-over par for his round, sophomore Carter Toms was steady on the front side as he played the inward nine at even-par en route to a round of 75 in his first action of the 2017 fall season. Toms finished the day in a tie for 34th place overall while playing as an individual.
Saturday Tee Times
The Tigers are paired with Arizona State and Georgia Tech for the second-straight day as they will tee off from the front nine in Saturday’s second round beginning at 10:45 a.m. CT. Tee times for Round 2 begins at 9:30 a.m. CT as fans can follow live scoring of the event at http://golfstat.com.
MAUI JIM INTERCOLLEGIATE – FIRST ROUND RESULTS
TEAM RESULTS (Par 288)
1. Kent State 281 -7; T2. Arizona State 289 +1; T2. Minnesota 289 +1; 4. Georgia Tech 291 +3; 5. Kansas 292 +4; T6. LSU 293 +5; T6. Lipscomb 293 +5; 8. Rice 297 +9; 9. Nebraska 298 +10; 10. Georgia State 300 +12; T11. Augusta 306 +18; T11. Gonzaga 306 +18; 13. Hawaii 332 +44.
TOP 10 INDIVIDUALS (Par 72)
1. Gisli Sveinbergsson, Kent State, 68 -4; 2. Noah Norton, Georgia Tech, 69 -3; T3. Chris Doody, Kent State, 70 -2; T3. Bjarki Petursson, Kent State, 70 -2; T3. Blake Wagoner, Arizona State, 70 -2; T3. Riley Johnson, Minnesota, 70 -2; T7. Luis Gagne, LSU, 71 -1; T7. Nick Budd, Georgia State, 71 -1; T7. Eric Ansett, Lipscomb, 71 -1; T7. Dawson Armstrong, Lipscomb, 71 -1.
* - Indicates player competing as an individual.