FRANKLIN, Tenn. — Sophomore Alex Goff and senior Allen Hamilton carded under-par scores on the opening day of play at the Legends Collegiate Invitational to lead the Kentucky men’s golf team. Despite their sub-par rounds and the best team score of the season, the Wildcats are in 13th headed into Monday’s second round at the Vanderbilt Legends Club.
“We battled and fought today, but did not have our best stuff,” UK head coach Brian Craig said. “Alex Goff played well and is off to a good start. Allen Hamilton also played well and left a few shots out there. We have 36 holes left and could use a good round tomorrow. One thing I know about this group, they can make some birdies when they get hot. Tomorrow would be a great day to warm up a little.”
Goff generated his third round of the season in the 60s with a score of 68 at 3-under par. That’s good for a tie for 12th on the individual leaderboard. Hamilton notched his first under-par score of the season with a 1-under 70 and is tied for 29th.
Kentucky finished the round at 1-over par with a combined 285 score. That mark is the lowest of the season for the Wildcats. Vanderbilt holds a one-shot lead over Arkansas and Texas A&M at 13-under par to lead the field. With 36 holes to play, the field is tightly bunched. All 14 squads are within 15 shots of one another. Three players lead the individual leaderboard at 7-under par, with Goff just four shots off their pace.
Goff birdied the par-five fourth to get to under par early. After the turn, he moved to 2-under with a birdie at the 10th. He combated a bogey on the 12th with birdies at the 14th and 15th holes. The Kings Mountain, North Carolina, native moved to 4-under for the round at the par-four 17th but yielded a shot on the 18th. In four rounds this season, Goff has played under par in three of them.
Hamilton, the team’s leader in scoring average a season ago, earned his first under-par round with a 1-under on Sunday. He birdied the par-four second to get going early. At the turn he was even par after a bogey on the seventh. The Louisville, Kentucky, native earned two more birdies at the 11th and 17th. Similarly to Goff, he gave a shot back at the 18th for the final 70 score.
Sophomore Jackson LaLonde, making his first career start in the lineup, shot a 1-over par 72. It’s the lowest round of his career. LaLonde is tied for 46th after the opening 18 holes. The Lexington, Kentucky, native got off to a fast start with birdies at the third and fourth holes to lead the Wildcats early. He entered the turn at even par. LaLonde capped the round in stylish fashion with a birdie at the par-five 18th to enter day two with some momentum.
Graduate student Jacob Cook fired a 75 and is 66th. Freshman Campbell Kremer is in 68th after a round of 79. Kremer fought off a difficult start by playing even-par over his final 10 holes.
Kentucky will be paired with Mississippi State on Monday. Play gets underway at the 10th hole at 10:35 a.m. ET.