SEVIERVILLE, Tenn. – A 23-over outing through the first 18 holes of play gave No. 25 Carson-Newman a share of fifth-place to close out the first day of the Bobby Nichols Intercollegiate at the Sevierville Golf Club on Sunday.
A 307 in the first round is the best opening round score for C-N in four showings at the event.
This also marks the second time this season the Eagles have carded a 307 round, the first coming in the second round of the UINDY Invitational at the beginning of the season.
"Very proud of our team today; we had some big numbers but kept with it," coach Suzanne Strudwick said. "That shows a lot of maturity and mental toughness I have not seen for a while. First round in the books with a very solid showing."
Reagan Kinnie (Murfreesboro, Tenn.) had the best day among the Orange and Blue starters, tying for eighth-place. She fired a 73 on Sunday, placing her three shots out of first with a two-over day. This was the junior's best first round score and her second-lowest round score overall in the event, just one shot shy of the 72 she carded in the second round last year.
Kinnie tied for third on par 5 scoring with a two-under average of 4.60. She also matched the most birdies on the day with four.
Two shots behind Kinnie was Maeve Cummins (Waringstown, Northern Ireland) at four-over, tying for 16th. The freshman shot a 75 on the day.
"Really good from Reagan and Maeve," Strudwick said. "Reagan's game is fun to watch. She is coming into form just at the right time. Maeve continues to show her determination and competitiveness as she did not hit the ball well but grinded out an excellent score."
Jayla Sims (Soddy Daisy, Tenn.) was eight-over on Sunday to hold a portion of 33rd. Making her event debut, this was just the second time this year that the sophomore has carded a 79 in a single round, the first coming in the second round at UINDY.
Sims was one-over on par 4 holes, averaging a 4.14 score on such holes.
One shot behind her was Taylor Hayes (Lake Ozark, Mo.) with an 80, tying her for 40th. This is the senior's second-lowest first round score through three trips to the Intercollegiate. She went two-over on par 4 scoring with a 4.29 average.
Individual Allie Fletcher (Cumming, Ga.) was 10-over on Sunday, allowing her to tie for 40th. This is the second time she has shot an 81 in the opening round in three seasons.
Out of the starters for C-N, Rachel Watts (Newport, Tenn.) was the lowest on the leaderboard, tying for 53rd with a 12-over 83. Despite that, this was the junior's best score through the first day of the event in her three appearances, besting back-to-back opening round scores of 84. In terms of this season, this was her second-highest round score.
Rounding out the Eagles on the leaderboard is Katie Medley (Cleveland, Tenn.), who replaced Anna Davenport (Roswell, Ga.) in the field due to flu, holding down the 67th spot with an 89. Playing as an individual, she was 18-over on the day.
As a team, C-N sits 18 shots back of the lead that is shared by Samford and Eastern Kentucky, both carding a five-over 289 on the first day. Marshall stands at third with a 293 while Tennessee Tech is fourth with a 303. Tied with C-N in fifth is Lee.
On the player side, Marshall's Shelby Brauckmuller and Samford's Sophie Membrino are both tied for first with a one-under 70. They were the only players in the field to shoot under par. A three-way tie occupies third-place with even scores of 70.
The tournament rolls on Monday with another round of play. A recap with results will be posted to cneagles.com at the end of the day.