March 3, 2014
CHOUDRANT, La. – After opening the spring campaign with perfect weather at its first two tournaments, Rice University men’s golf battled both cold conditions and a tough regional field in Monday’s first round of the Argent Financial Classic. The Owls carded a 320 (+32) to end the day in 11th place at Squire Creek, where the temperature hovered around 30 degrees for most of the day.
At the top of Rice’s leaderboard, three players are tied for 37th with a 79 (+7). Tommy Economou overcame a slow start to play the final 10 holes at even-par. He notched two birdies on the day.
Alex Levy struggled right out of the gate with a triple-bogey on his first hole, but bounced back well throughout the remainder of the round with hardly any other blemishes, including nine pars and two birdies.
Reigning Conference USA Golfer of the Week Kevin Reilly rounded out the trio with one of the stranger stretches of scores on the back nine. The freshman holed an eagle on the par-four 14th hole, but posted a cumulative six-over par mark spanning the 12th through 16th holes. He added three birdies and seven pars. Reilly’s 14th-hole eagle was one of just two eagles recorded on the day, and only two other players recorded a birdie on the 405-yard hole.
Individually, Joe Beck III carded a 76 (+4) with one birdie and 12 pars to end the day in 20th place, the highest among the nine individual competitors.
Host Louisiana Tech leads the field with a 293 (+5), one stroke ahead of fellow C-USA foe North Texas.
New Orleans ranks just ahead of the Owls at 317, while Arkansas-Little Rock ranks ninth at 314. Arkansas State and Missouri State are on Rice’s heels in 12th place at 326.
Louisiana-Monroe’s Calum Hill and Central Arkansas’ Pep Angles are tied for the lead at 70 (-2). Only Louisiana Tech’s Victor Lange (71) also came in under par for the round.
Tuesday’s final round begins with a shotgun start at 10 a.m.