Oliva Pinto Leads; Razorbacks 3rd After Rd1 at SEC


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ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Segundo Oliva Pinto fired a bogey-free, 6-under-par 64 and leads after round one of the 2021 SEC Men’s Golf Championships, played at Sea Island Golf Club – Seaside Course (par 70, 7,005 yards). His play combined with William Buhl’s 69 has #22 Arkansas in third place with a 2-under-par 278, three strokes off the lead.

Georgia, ranked 10th, and #19 Tennessee are 1-2 in the standings after day one. The Bulldogs posted a 5-under 275 and the Volunteers are at -3 (277). LSU and Vanderbilt sit behind the Hogs in a tie for fourth, each shooting a 1-over 281.

Arkansas was the only team to have all five golfers birdie the 565-yard, par-5 15th hole. The Razorbacks’ round one total of 278 ties a program record for the best opening-round total at the SEC Championship (also shooting 278 in round one in 2010) and ties for the program’s fourth-best total at the event behind a 268 in (Rd3 in 2017), a pair or 274’s (Rd 2 in 2019 and Rd 3 in 2018) and a pair of 275’s (Rd 2 in 2015 and Rd 3 in 2014).

Oliva Pinto, who won the last conference tournament he played at the 2019 Colonial Athletic Association title, leads a pair of golfers by one stroke and one by two strokes as he had one of the best rounds in school and SEC Championship history.

·   His 64 tied for the lowest first-round score in SEC history (matching a 64 shot in Rd1 in 2017) and tied for the third-best score overall behind a 61 in 2014 and a 63 in 2010.

·   He tied the Arkansas record for the lowest round at an SEC Championship as Sebastian Cappelen posted a 6-under (64) in round three at the Seaside Course in 2014 and Bud Still carded an 8-under (64) round three in 1995 the par 72 Springhouse Golf Club in Nashville.

·   He is the third Razorback to shoot 64 this season, joining two-time performer Julian Perico, and the total ties for third on the school’s list overall, trailing a pair of 63’s.

·   The 64 additionally is the second-lowest round by Oliva Pinto for his career and best since shooting a final-round 61 in his 2019-20 season-opening win at the Golfweek Program Challenge (Sept. 1-3, 2019) while at UNC Wilmington.

·   He was the only player in the field to play a bogey-free round.

“I played simple golf today,” Oliva Pinto said. I picked good targets and executed properly. “(Associate head coach) Barrett Lais helped me stay in right mindset today.”

Oliva Pinto opened with a par then birdied four of his next six holes, including three straight on holes 5, 6 and 7, to make the turn at -4. The junior started the back nine with five straight pars before birdies on holes 15 and 16. He finished with back-to-back pars for his 6-under round of 64.

Buhl, who missed the fall after back surgery, is tied for 10th thanks to his 1-under round of 69. It marks his third career round of 69 or better at the Championship and ties his best round of the season. He opened with a bogey and was +2 through six holes after a birdie on hole 2 and bogeys on holes 4 and 6. However, the fifth-year senior bounced back with a birdie on the par-5, 7th hole and, after seven straight pars, Buhl joined Oliva Pinto with birdies on holes 15 and 16 before finishing with back-to-back pars for his round of 69.

Rounding out the Razorback quintet were Tyson Reeder (T33/72), Manuel Lozada (T41/73) and Julian Perico (T48/74).

Round two of three of the SEC stroke play portion is set for Thursday. The top eight teams after 54 holes of stroke play will advance to match play Saturday.

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