STATESBORO, Ga. – Positioned near the top of the leaderboard for the majority of the opening round, the Notre Dame men’s golf team fashioned an even-par score of 288 to place fourth on Friday after day one of the Schenkel Invitational at the Forest Heights Country Club.
Miguel Delgado and Andrew O’Leary each paced Notre Dame after the first round, scoring matching outings of 71 (-1) to tie for ninth in the overall tournament field. Davis Lamb and Ben Albin both checked in with rounds of 73 (+1) to share 25th place, and Taichi Kho rounded out the Irish starting lineup tied for 66th place with a 77 (+5). Playing as an unattached individual, Kevin Conners fired an opening score of 76 (+4) to share 55th.
The tournament’s top four were the only teams to fire scores at par or better, with the par-72, 6,947-yard Forest Heights Country Club layout yielding a meager 74.48 average across 75 total rounds. Notre Dame tied for first in par-4 scoring average (4.06) as a squad to open the event, placing third with a 3.15 stroke average on the par 3s.
Bouncing back from a bogey at the first hole, Delgado played the remainder of his front nine in four-under-par. The Notre Dame senior notched birdies at the par-4 second, par 3 sixth, par-4 eighth and par-5 ninth holes to make the turn in 33 (-3). Bogies at the 10th and 12th holes knocked Delgado back off the pace to 1-under, but a string of six straight pars carried him to the clubhouse with a 71 and a top-10 placement after day one.
O’Leary also dropped a shot at the opening hole to begin his round, but bounced back immediately with a birdie at the second. The Irish freshman would cancel out a bogey at the par-3 third hole by birdieing the ninth for an even 36 on the front side. Birdies at the par-4 11th and 16th holes offset a lone bogey on the back side that brought O’Leary in at 71.
Lamb logged two birdies opposite three bogies as part of his 1-over score of 73, a sequence that was matched by teammate Albin to tie for 25th place.
Tee times for the second round of the Schenkel Invitational will begin at 9 a.m. (ET) on Saturday at the Forest Heights Country Club. Notre Dame players will take the course off the first tee in the scheduled wave between 9:45 and 10:21 a.m.