E.A. Sports Today

Brandt leads by 1

Auburn pro shoots 68, leads by one shot over four players; complete scores and Saturday pairings

By East Alabama Sports Today

Former Big Break winner Jimmy Brandt has always played well in the Fort McClellan Credit Union Pro-Invitational but has never won it.

He gave himself a good start Friday, shooting a 4-under-par 68 to open a one-shot lead after the opening round.

Brandt, who won the 2014 Big Break series in Myrtle Beach, leads over fellow pros Jared Davis of Valdosta, Ga., and Neal Grusczynski of Milwaukee, Wis.; and Calhoun County Golf Tour amateurs Jeremy McGatha and Ty Cole.

Brandt and Davis were both 3-under at the turn. Both bogeyed the par-3 12th, but Brandt birdied 14 and 17 coming home. Davis, playing in only his third pro event, also bogeyed 13, but came back with an eagle on 14 to get back to 3-under. He bogeyed 16 and birdied 18.

Grusczynski, a former Jacksonville State assistant golf coach now running his own NAIA program in Wisconsin, bogeyed his first two holes then birdied three of his next four and turned in even par. He birdied three of his final five.

McGatha had four birdies and a bogey. He birdied three of his final five holes. Cole, a former mini-tour pro, had six birdies in his round. He was putting for sole possession of the lead on 18, but three-putted for a bogey that dropped him into a tie for second.

The wildest swing of the day belonged to Clay Calkins. The 51-year-old Jacksonville amateur shot 5-over 41 on the front nine, then bounced back with a 5-under 31 – with a bogey – on the back.

The front was marred by a triple bogey on the serpentine par-5 eighth when he failed to hit a shot off the rocks in the hazard. He played the first five holes on the back in 4-under, with a bogey on the par-3 12th and an eagle on the par-5 14th. It was one of four eagles the hole yielded in the round.

“That is probably the biggest swing, especially in a tournament, that I’ve ever had,” Calkins said. “It was awesome. Being able to still compete at almost 52 years old is just fun.

“Ten years ago, no way I could have made that comeback; I’d have been out of it. But as you get older, you learn to keep your patience and it just came together.”

The second round begins Saturday at 9 a.m.

This story will be updated.

First round scores

x-Jimmy Brandt 33-35—68
Jeremy McGatha 35-34—69
x-Jared Davis 33-36—69
Ty Cole 33-36—69
x-Neal Grusczynski 36-33—69
x-Glenn Northcutt 35-35—70
x-Tol Dozier 38-33—71
x-Jay McLuen 36-35—71
x-Kyle Sapp 34-38—72
x-Brent Witcher 37-35—72
Clay Calkins 41-31—72
Chad Calvert 36-36—72
Caleb Bowen 36-36—72
Dalton Chandler 36-36—72
Dakota Yawn 36-36—72
Scott Martin 37-35—72
x-Jordan Anderton 37-36—73
x-Clayton Gregory 38-35—73
Caleb McKinney 37-36—73
x-Alex Tull 40-34—74
x-Jared Smith 37-37—74
Kevin Daugherty 38-36—74
Gary Wigington 37-37—74
Chandler Wilborn 40-35—75
Brennan Clay 39-37—76
x-Jaylon Ellison 39-37—76
Billy Thompson 38-39—77
Adrian Geeting 39-38—77
Janson Wilborn 39-38—77
Andrew Brooks 41-37—78
Josh Lewis 40-38—78
Benji Turley 38-40—78
Layton Bussey 42-36—78
Casey Harmon 40-39—79
Landon Straub 40-40—80
Scott Eaton 39-41—80
x-Zack Lynch 40-41—81
Jeff Borrelli 42-39—81
Matt Rogers 40-41—81
Austin Minter 41-42—83
Dan Griffin 43-40—83
Shane Chappell 52-46—98

Saturday pairings
9:00 — x-Jimmy Brandt (68), Jeremy McGatha (69), x-Jared Davis (69)
9:09 — Ty Cole (69), x-Neal Gruszynski (69), x-Glenn Northcutt (70)
9:18 — x-Tol Dozier (71), x-Jay McLuen (71), x-Kyle Sapp (72)
9:27 — x-Brent Witcher (72), Clay Calkins (72), Chad Calvert (72)
9:36 — Caleb Bowen (72), Dalton Chandler (72), Dakota Yawn (72)
9:45 — Scott Martin (72), x-Jordan Anderton (73), x-Clayton Gregory (73)
9:54 — Caleb McKinney (73), x-Alex Tull (74), x-Jared Smith (74)
10:03 — Kevin Daugherty (74), Gary Wigington (74), Chandler Wilborn (75)
10:12 — Brennan Clay (76), x-Jaylon Ellison (76), Billy Thompson (77)
10:21 — Adrian Geeting (77), Janson Wilborn (77), Andrew Brooks (78)
10:30 — Josh Lewis (78), Casey Harmon (79), Landon Straub (80)
10:39 — Scott Eaton (80), x-Zack Lynch (81), Jeff Borrelli (81)
10:48 — Matt Rogers (81), Austin Minter (83), Dan Griffin (83), Shane Chappell (98)
11:00 — Chip Howell, Jackson Johnson, Mark Cotton
11:09 — Daily Thomas, Rodney Guy, Rich Santagata, Eric Hoskins
11:18 — Paul Szuch, Harrison Szuch, Cory Parker
11:27 — Rocco D’Gomez, John McKenzie, Steve Davis
11:36 — Tyler Teneyck, Clark Cunningham, Larry Cunningham
11:45 — James Ramey, Doug Sears, Jimbo Phillips
11:54 — Ott Chandler, Gary Wilborn, Kyle Daugherty, Rick Taylor
12:03 p.m. — Jimmy Jackson, David Gilley, John Brewer, Barry Summerlin
12:45 – Benji Turley, Layton Bussey, Nick Pollard

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