ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- The Georgia and Kentucky squads share the lead after one round of the Southeastern Conference Men's Golf Championship on Sea Island Golf Club's Seaside Course.
On Friday, the Bulldogs and the Wildcats - ranked fourth and 32nd, respectively, in the latest GolfStat poll - each fired a 3-under 277 on the par-70, 7,005-yard layout. Florida is third at 5-over 285, followed by Vanderbilt and Tennessee both at 6-over 286, and Texas A&M at 7-over 287.
Vanderbilt's Matthias Schwab navigated the course in 4-under 66 to snare the individual lead. Six players - Georgia's Zach Healy and Lee McCoy, Auburn's Matt Gilchrest, Florida's Gordon Neale, Kentucky's Tyler McDaniel and Texas A&M's Chandler Phillips are two shots back at 2-under 68. Kentucky's Stephen Stallings Jr. and Georgia's Greyson Sigg are next at 1-under 69.
As with the practice round on Thursday, the teams dealt not only with the always-tough Seaside Course but also with high winds and periodic rain throughout the day.
"Seaside was a tremendous test today," Kentucky coach Brian Craig said. "The wind was super challenging and the playing conditions were excellent. Our guys executed well and stayed patient all day. We have a long way to go, but this is a good start for our guys."
Added Georgia coach Chris Haack, "We knew coming in to today it was going to be tough. The wind was blowing from the get-go. I was proud of the way our guys played with confidence. They hit the right spots and made their putts and were grinding away. That's all you can ask for on a day like this."
Schwab, a junior, finished his round with three birdies on each side.
"I thought Matthias played very well and was able to manage the conditions," Commodores coach Scott Limbaugh said. "He's a really patient player and I think he was rewarded for that today. He gave himself a lot of opportunities and was able to capitalize on several of them. His round was very important for our team and I am proud of how he battled."
The second round of the 54-hole tournament will continue on Saturday with tee times starting at 7:30 a.m. EDT. Live results can be found at GolfStat.com and SECSports.com.