PEBBLE BEACH, Calif.
– Kevin Murphy
, Kyosuke Hara
and Shawn Lu
all shot a 2-over 73 to lead the Oregon State men's golf team in the opening round of the Saint Mary's Invitational on Monday.
The Beavers finished the first round of the three-day, 54-hole tournament with a 12-over 296 at the par-71, 6,927-yard Poppy Hills Golf Course to put them in a tie for third place with Saint Mary's, Arizona and Santa Clara.
Gonzaga and Fresno State are tied for first place after firing a 6-over 290.
The second round will begin at 7:40 a.m. on Tuesday and live scoring is available at golfstat.com
"It wasn't our best today, but I thought the guys did a good job of managing their emotions and sticking with it to the end of their rounds, which was evident as we made three birdies to finish," Oregon State head coach Jon Reehoorn
said. "Overall, we didn't drive the ball very well and is cost us early.
"On the 18th hole all four of our guys hit perfect drives on a tough hole into the wind and hopefully that builds a little confidence going into tomorrow."
Lu, a freshman from Honolulu, Hawai'i, started hot with birdies on each of his first three holes. He put another circle on his scoreboard on the par-4 ninth hole before finishing the day with a 2-over 73.
Hara, who attended Moanalua High School in Honolulu with Lu, was three over through eight, but played his final 10 holes at 1 under to post a 2-over 73.
Murphy, a senior from Rogue River, Ore., birdied the par-5, 535-yard ninth and par-5, 515-yard 18th holes to also shoot a 2-over 73.
Junior Jonas Liebich
finished the day with a 6-over 77 to make up the Beavers' first-round score.
Senior Conner Kumpula
carded an 8-over 79 but played his final eight holes at 1 under to give him momentum going into the final two rounds.
Sophomore Tom Kerkvliet
, who is competing as an individual, shot a 3-over 74.
Only two golfers in the 84-player field finished in red figures, Eduardo Carrete of Saint Mary's and Tim Widing of San Francisco, who both fired a 2-under 69.
"Going into the day I knew we would face a tough task to finish our rounds based on the weather forecast," Reehoorn said. "If you look at the leaderboard and tee times, the top two teams teed off first and we were two hours later. They saw a pretty benign course with no wind of two hours, where our guys played in the wind about all day.
"Our team is in a good place. To be in the position we are with Conner not playing his best is a good sign. If we can drive the ball a little better as a team tomorrow and get Conner going I know they expect to be competing at the top of the leaderboard come Wednesday."
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