LSU women’s golfers in eighth

The LSU women’s golf team hit a couple of rough spots on the University Club layout Friday and stand in eighth place after the first round of the LSU Tiger Golf Classic.

But LSU junior Lindsay Gahm is in the race for the individual title heading into Saturday’s second round after an even-par round of 72 on the 6,300-yard layout to put her one shot out of a group of three who posted a 1-under 71.

Gahm, from Louisville, Ky., birdied the par-5 third and par-4 fourth holes and was the first golfer to reach 2-under par. She turned at 1-under and again pushed 2-under on the 14th hole. But bogeys on the 15th and 17th holes left her at even par for the day.

Among those in the lead at 1-under is Tennessee senior Erica Popson, who is the defending co-medalist in the tournament. Popson, the highest ranked player in the Golfstat rankings entering the event at No. 14, also got to 2-under three times before a bogey on 18 dropped her back. Popson was the top scorer of the day on the par 5s, playing the four holes in 4-under par.

Also at 1-under par on the opening day was Tulane’s Maribel Lopez Porras and Arkansas’ Gabriela Lopez. Porras used a birdie on the seventh hole (her 16th of the day) to get under par for the round, while Lopez used back-to-back birdies on the sixth and seventh holes.

On a day when the average score on a day that was predominantly overcast with some misting rain at times and wind, was almost 79 (78.95), Arkansas took advantage of shooting just 4-over on the par-4 holes to take a five-shot team lead after the first round after shooting a 5-over round of 293. The 2011 champions of the event, are clear of Tulane, which posted a 10-over round of 298. Two-time champion TCU and four-time champion Florida State are tied for third at 13-over 301.

LSU’s team found problems in the opening three holes of its round, going eight over on its counting scores, but righting things to finish the front nine at eight over. The 30th-ranked Lady Tigers played the first five holes of the back nine in just three over, but lost seven shots at the end of the round to drop back in the field.

Defending team champion Tennessee is just one shot ahead of LSU in seventh place at 17-over par.

Besides Gahm’s round, LSU counted a 5-over 77 from Elise Bradley, a 6-over 78 from Madelene Sagstrom and a 7-over round of 79 from Nadine Dreher.

Tulane’s other counting scores were a 2-over from Madison Opfer, a 4-over 76 from Gemma Dryburgh and a 77 from Emily Penttila.

ULM is in 13th place in the 14-team field at 35-over 323. Their leading score came from Valentine Loge who had a 77 and Alison Knowles who posted 78.

The second round, scheduled for Saturday, has been changed from a tee time start to an 8:30 a.m. shotgun start because of the forecast of potential weather in the afternoon. That means all teams will play at the same time.

The final round on Sunday will also have its usual shotgun start.