PONTE VEDRA BEACH, FL - The ninth-ranked Duke men's golf team sits in second place after posting a six-under par, 282, Sunday in the first round of the John Hayt Collegiate Invitational played at Sawgrass Country Club. The Blue Devils end the day six-shots behind leader North Florida and are one of 10 teams in the top 50 of the latest Golfweek rankings competing in the 54-hole tournament.
North Florida holds a six shot lead over Duke after posting a 12-under 276 on Sunday. Central Florida (286) is four shots behind the second place Blue Devils with LSU (290) and Coastal Carolina (291) rounding out the top five.
The Blue Devils were led by junior Austin Cody and freshman Mads Soegaard, who both carded two-under 70s to put them in a tie for 10th place overall. Cody, a native of North Charleston, S.C., had an up and down day in which he made seven birdies along with five bogeys. Cody opened the day with a birdie on the par 4 first, but followed the strong start with back-to-back bogeys on No. 2 and No. 3. Cody made a birdie at No. 5, but dropped a shot on the par 3 sixth hole, before carding a birdie on No. 8 to post an even-par 36 on the front side. On the back nine, Cody opened with three consecutive birdies on No. 10, No. 11 and No. 12 to pull himself to three-under par for the day, but dropped shots at No. 13 and No. 16 before finishing strong with a birdie at the par 5 18th hole.
Soegaard carded three birdies on the opening side, but dropped a shot at the par 4 seventh hole to make the turn at two-under par. On the back nine, the freshman from Denmark dropped shots at the par 3 12th and par 4 13th, before ending the day with birdies on No. 17 and No. 18 to post an opening round 70.
Seniors Adam Sumrall and Brinson Paolini both ended the day tied for 17th at one-under par, but had two very different rounds en route to their opening round 71s. Sumrall played consistently all day, making eight pars and one birdie on the front side to make the turn with a 35. On the back side, Sumrall made a birdie at the par 5 11th hole, but dropped a shot on No. 10 before ending the day with four consecutive pars. Paolini, a native of Virginia Beach, Va., started the day with a birdie on No. 1, but dropped a shot when he bogeyed the par 4 second hold. After making birdies on No. 4, No. 7 and No 9, Paolini made the turn at three-under par. On the back nine, Paolini followed a bogey on No. 10 with a birdie on the par 5 11th, but dropped two shots on No. 17 and No. 18 to close the nine with a 38.
Senior All-American Julian Suri struggled through day one, firing an opening round 75 at the John Hayt Collegiate Invitational. Suri started the day with a bogey on No. 1 and a double bogey on the par 3 third hole, but responded with birdies on No. 4 and No. 8 to keep his round at two-over par as he made the turn. On the back side, Suri birdied No. 11, but dropped a shot on No. 15 and two shots on No. 16. The St. Augustine, Fla., native responded with a birdie on No. 17 to card a 37 on the back nine.
Sophomore Michael Ricaurte posted an opening round 77 to put him in a tie for 63rd while playing as an individual in the event. Ricaurte opened the day with five consecutive pars, and found himself at one-over par through 15 holes, but made back-to-back double bogeys on No. 16 and No. 17. Ricaurte rebounded with a birdie at the par 5 18th to close the back nine with a four over par 40.
Kevin Phelan (North Florida) owns the first round lead after shooting a tournament record eight-under 64.Teammates Sean Dale and Joe Stepnes are tied for second a four-under along with Ricardo Gouveia (Central Florida) and Sebastian Soderberg (Coastal Carolina).
The Blue Devils will play the second round of the 54-hole John Hayt Collegiate Invitational Monday. Duke will be paired with North Florida and Central Florida in the second round with action getting under way at 9:30 am.
Live scoring for the tournament is available at www.golfstat.com.