Feb. 6, 2013
Amer Ari First Round
WAIKOLOA, Hawaii - Stanford is tied for eighth place at one-under-par 287, after the opening round Wednesday at the Amer Ari Invitational at the Waikoloa Kings' Course on the Big Island.
Senior Steve Kearney led the team with a three-under-par 69, with an eagle and two birdies placing him tied for tenth.
"I hit a really good drive down the middle," said Kearney about the eagle at the par-five 18th. "The short side was left there so we decided to hit a 6-iron because the downwind would hit it to about 20 feet. Then I finally made a good putt, put a good stroke on it, made it on the right edge and it fell in there."
Nine teams shot under par in the first round with Texas Christian and UCLA tied for first after 11-under-par performances, 10 strokes ahead of the Cardinal.
"We had a lot of few easy opportunities get away from us on the course but we're still within striking distance with a couple of rounds left," said The Knowles Family Director of Golf Conrad Ray. "[Holes] 10 through 13 is a big stretch and we start around that area tomorrow. If we play those holes well and the guys manage their mental games well, we'll be in good shape for the last two days."
The Cardinal began the front nine with freshman David Boote in a three-under lead after three early birdies. Kearney followed suit shooting two-under and senior Andrew Yun was one-under.
Junior Cameron Wilson and sophomore Patrick Rodgers had to overcome early bogeys, both shooting two-over in the first nine holes.
Heading into the back nine, Kearney and Boote kept pace, while Yun and Wilson played off the momentum of three consecutive birdies, a turkey a piece.
"I birdied two of the par-5s by hitting on two and two putting," said Yun who finished with five birdies for one-under, putting him 23rd overall. "For the other ones I hit, my second shot was within 10 feet and I just made the putt."
Boote came in third for Stanford and tied for 51st at one-over. Wilson tied for 67th at two-over and Rodgers' five-over-par 77 tied him for 96th.
Junior Shane Lebow, who is competing as an individual, is also at 67th after an opening round of 74.
For Kearney, tomorrow comes another round and the same game plan.
"My goal today was just fairways and greens," said Kearney. "If the putts fall, then the putts fall."
- By Estela-Marie Go, Stanford Athletics
Follow @StanfordMGolf on Twitter for up-to-the-minute updates and quotes from the team. Get to know the players and the program through the daily features at facebook.com/StanfordMensGolf