Raiders tied for third after first round of SBC Championship

Armstrong cards a 69, Denman 72

April 22, 2013 · @MTAthletics

First Round Results

MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala. - Middle Tennessee shot an opening round 295 on Monday to stand in a tie for third place at the 2013 Sun Belt Conference Championships. The Blue Raiders had 13 birdies on the tough Fighting Joe course on the Robert Trent Jones at the Shoals complex (par 72, 7,395 yards).

The 295 total in the first round was the best for the Blue Raiders in SBC play since the 2010 tourney. That year MT opened with a 286.

"I am proud of the fight our guys showed today and we are right in the thick of it," said Head Coach Whit Turnbow. "Lucas (Armstrong) and Payne (Denman) played great all day but both finishing with birdies on 18 was a big boost to our team."

No. 49 South Alabama grabbed the first round lead with a 4-under par 284, while UALR was second after firing a 293. Georgia State, No. 38 North Texas and the Blue Raiders are all tied for third.

Junior Lucas Armstrong led the way for the Blue Raiders by matching his career-best round with a 69. Armstrong, who had five birdies on the day, is second overall and only one shot back of the lead.

Sophomore Payne Denman carded an even par 72 and is tied for sixth. Denman finished with birdies on 16 and 18 to send the Blue Raiders into a tie for third.

Sophomore Andrew Cho and junior Jordan Jennings both registered 77s and are tied for 35th. Sophomore Sam Thompson had an 82 and is tied for 51st.

The Blue Raiders will begin second round action Tuesday morning at 8:00 AM.

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