Gaunt Opens SEC Championship With 5-Under 65

by Aaron Hyder | Assistant Communications Director
Gaunt Opens SEC Championship With 5-Under 65

St. Simons Island, Ga. Connor Gaunt’s 5-under 65 on day one of the SEC Championship at the Sea Island Golf Club – Seaside Course – got the LSU men’s golf team started on the right foot on Wednesday. The Tigers carded a 1-over 281 team score to position themselves in a tie for fourth place after day one of the event.

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Gaunt’s round was superb in many ways; his score to par (-5) matched his lowest single round total in relation to par in an LSU uniform, his six birdies were the second most of his LSU career in a single round, and the 65 was the lowest number shot by an LSU golfer at Seaside since 2014. Smylie Kaufman (64) and Zach Wright (65) were the last Tigers to shoot 65 or better, and that happened in the third round of the 2014 SEC Championship. Gaunt’s six birdies on the day ranked second in the field of 70 players and his 5-under 65 has him in a two-way tie for second place, one stroke off the individual lead.

Gaunt started off less ideal than he wanted as he bogeyed the opening hole. But that was it. Following that bogey he played the final 17 holes to the tune of 6-under with six birdies, including three straight on Nos. 6-8 en route to turning in a 3-under 32 on the front. His two birdies on the back nine came on No. 14 and No. 15 to get him to 5-under for the round.

Freshman Nicholas Arcement played delightfully in his SEC debut with a 1-under 69. He went 35 on the front and 34 on the back for his 69; the back nine saw him birdie two straight on Nos. 15 and 16 to get to 1-under for the round. He is tied for 10th currently.

Garrett Barber (2-over 72) and Drew Doyle (5-over 75) were the final two counting scores for the Tigers. Barber is tied for 33rd and Doyle is in a tie for 56th. Michael Sanders shot a 6-over 76 and is in 58th place.

Seaside proved to be tough as only three teams – Georgia, Tennessee, Arkansas – checked in at under par for the day. Georgia leads the event at 5-under 275. The leaderboard is quite tight with eight teams less than five shots apart from places fourth through 11th.

Round two for LSU will begin on Thursday morning at 8:20 a.m. CT. LSU will be paired with Vanderbilt and Auburn.