But that tells only part of the story. The host University of the Cumberlands team and Lindsey-Wilson College are tied for third at 294, and then you have Milligan College and SCAD-Atlanta in striking distance at 298.
The Flames had a golden opportunity to take command of the tourney after Matt Emery and Hunter Vest posted 1-under rounds of 71 and Tyler Smith tallied an even-par 72 on the Crooked Creek layout. However, finding the fourth score to count was troubling for coach John Maupin. Veteran JB Eksteen came in at 79 and newcomer Florian Loutre ballooned to an 86.
Another newcomer, Taylor Davis, drew some attention when he carded a par 72 score. Davis and Peyton Sliger were playing as extras and their scores did not count in the team totals.
Alastair Tidcombs of the Cumberlands fired a 2-under 70 to take first-day individual honors in the field of 82 golfers. Emery and Vest are tied for second and Smith is tied for seventh.
The Lee women’s golf team opened the 2012 fall play by firing a 313 total in the Invitational. The Lady Patriots (303) are the tournament leaders, holding a 10-stroke advantage over the Lady Flames.
Coach John Maupin’s team has a 17-stroke advantage over third place Lindsey Wilson (Ky.). Milligan College is fourth (349) and Union College (350) rounds out the top five in the eight-team field.
In Thursday’s individual play, Cumberlands Liz Stephens blistered the par 73, 6008-yards Crooked Creeks course with a 4-under 69. Lee’s Courtney Shelton posted a 1-over 74 and holds down second place in the field of 46 players. Sloane Skinner (77) is tied for fifth place. Madison Alexander (80) is deadlocked for ninth and Chelsa Rakestraw (82) is tied for 12th, rounding out the four Lee players scores that counted during Thursday’s action. Newcomer Bernadette Little totaled an 83, good enough for a tie for 14th.
The final 18 holes are slated to get underway this morning.