GREENSBORO, N.C. – Huntingdon College’s Addison Lambeth shot a three-under-par 68 and helped the Hawks to first place after Monday’s opening round of the O’Briant-Jensen Memorial Tournament. Lambeth made a tournament-best four birdies with only one bogey on the par-71, 6,819-yard layout in northwest Greensboro that serves as Guilford College’s home course.
Under sunny skies with temperatures in the upper 50s, the host Quakers shot 311 Monday and share third place with Kenyon College, nine strokes behind the leaders. Wittenberg University holds second place in the 18-team field after a first-round 307, five behind Huntingdon. Greensboro College shot 312 and rounds out the top-five teams after 18 holes. Methodist University, the top-ranked team in the Golfstat.com Division III Head-to-Head Ratings, sits in a three-way tie for sixth place at 316.
Lambeth recorded Monday’s only subpar score in the 96-man field. Greensboro John Grimes shot a one-over 72 and holds second place, two strokes in front of the trio of Guilford’s Justin Perdue, Methodist’s Craig Decato and Emory University’s Connor Yakubov. The Quakers’ Tanner Gross (Archdale, N.C./Homeschooled) is part of a three-way tie for sixth place at 75.
Huntingdon, ranked 12th according to Golfstat.com, had three golfers place among the top-20 individuals, including Chad Ring, who is ninth place with a 76. Will Thrash shot 78 and is tied for 20th place. Teammates Chase Faegin and Jon Colton Stanaland both shot 80. The Hawks led the field with a 4.38 average on the 11 par-four holes and 4.80 on the three par-five holes.
Guilford’s Ty Palmer (Kernersville, N.C./Forsyth Country Day) recorded the day’s lone eagle on the 491-yard, par-5 10th hole. He followed with a birdie on 11, to get to two-over, but played the last five holes at five-over to settle for a 78 and a piece of 20th place. Sophomore Harrison Frye (High Point, N.C./High Point Central) provided the Quakers’ fourth score with an 84.
The O’Briant-Jensen has been played annually since 1988 at the course formerly known as the Cardinal. It was initially named for longtime Guilford golf supporters and Cardinal members Tom and Bettie O’Briant, but adopted its current title in 2010 after the passing of longtime Quakers’ golf and basketball coach Jack Jensen. The tourney typically attracts some of NCAA Division III’s top teams and 2015 is no exception. Nine squads ranked among Golfstat.com’s top-45 teams are in Greensboro, including Methodist, an eight-time O’Briant-Jensen winner. Four teams are ranked among the top-17 in the current Bushnell Golfweek Division III Coaches’ Poll.
The 36-hole tournament concludes Tuesday with the top-three groups going off from the first tee at 9:30 a.m.