LEXINGTON, SC — With a blustering wind opposing them, the Lexington Wildcats took a 17-stroke lead on over the field on the first day of the Class 4A girls golf finals at the Country Club of Lexington.
On their home course, the Wildcats shot a combined 305, five shots above their state-low 300 qualifying mark from last week.
I had in mind 300 or better, but with the conditions, with 30-mile-an-hour wind gusts, it wasnt meant to be, said coach Brandon Smith, whose Wildcats placed second last season.
Spartanburg shot a 322, which is 36 shots ahead of third-place squad Bluffton.
Dutch Fork shot a 376, led by Nicole Chins 81, and is in 12th. Juliana Sebastian shot a 78 to lead Spring Valley to 378, and 13th.
Lexingtons Sydney Legacy was the individual leader with a 1-under-par 71, while teammates Lauren Stephenson and Hailey Cleary shot 74 and 76, respectively.
I dont think we really felt any pressure, Legacy said. It was just nice to be at home (as tournament host) and have that advantage, to sleep in our own beds.
The Wildcats dont expect to feel much pressure in todays final round.
We just need to play like we did today, Legacy said.
I feel good because we dont have to go out there tomorrow and shoot for a real low number, Smith said.
Lexingtons aim is to play settled and smart, and make teams catch us, Smith said.
As far as an overall score, I would absolutely take 305 again, he said.
The final 18-hole round of the Class 4A title match begins with tee-off at 8:30 a.m. today.
First round: Lexington 305; Spartanburg 322; Bluffton 341; South Pointe 345; Easley 346; South Aiken 358; Wade Hampton 360; TL Hanna 364; Dorman 364; Carolina Forest 367
Individuals: Sydney Legacy (L) 71; Katy Funk (S) 72; Riley Lovorn (TLH) 73; Kelli Murphy (LE) 73; Taylor Dodson (SA) 74; Lauren Stephenson (L) 74; Hailey Cleary (L) 76; Natalie Srinivasen (D) 77; Chandler Case (SP) 77; Brandi Hammonds (B) 77