BREMERTON, Wash. — Freshman Kevin Murphy and junior transfer Alex Franklin each shot a 1-under 143 and senior David Fink added an even-par 144 at the par-72, 7,124-yard Gold Mountain Olympic Course to lift the Beavers into a tie for third in the 15-team field Kikkor Husky Invitational with a 2-over 290-288—578 on Monday.
Host Washington went to bed with a commanding 10-stroke lead after firing an 11-under 565, while San Diego is second with a 1-under 575 and BYU is tied with OSU for third with a 2-over 578. Pac-12 foes Arizona State and Oregon are tied for fifth with a 4-over 580.
The final 18 holes will begin at 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday, and the Beavers will be paired with Oregon and Arizona State.
“Overall, it was a really good start to the beginning of the season,” coach Jon Reehoorn said. “It felt like we got off to a really good start, which is tough to do on the front nine. But, unfortunately, we couldn’t maintain the momentum for the entire 18 and finished each round with a few sloppy bogeys.
“If we can clean up the small mistakes and keep our mind on the process of playing good golf for the entire round, we should have a good day tomorrow.”
Franklin, who transferred to OSU from Marion College, got off to a strong start in his debut for the Beavers by carding three birdies on the front nine in the morning to shoot a 3-under 33. He had two bogeys and no birdies on the back side, and finished with a 1-under 71. In the afternoon round, he added three more birdies but took a double-bogey and a single to shoot an even-par 72.
Murphy, one of the best recruits in school history, started his collegiate career with a bogey on the first hole but responded with six birdies and just two bogeys over the next 17 to shoot a 3-under 69. He added two birdies, but took four bogeys, in the afternoon to shoot a 2-over 74.
Both golfers sit in a tie for ninth place, five strokes behind clubhouse leader Cheng-Tsung Pan of Washington, with a 1-under 143.
“It was great to see Alex and Kevin get their Beaver careers off to solid starts,” Reehoorn said. “This group has the ability to do some special things this season, and it will be fun to see how they respond to entering the final round in the first event of the year with a chance to have a really good finish.”
Fink shot a 3-over 75 in the morning with two birdies, three bogeys and a double. But he showed his talent and grit in the afternoon by carding an eagle and four birdies to get him to 5-under through 14 holes before ending with two bogeys and two pars over the final four to finish with a 3-under 69.
The lefty and team captain is tied for 15th place with an even-par 144 heading into Tuesday’s final round.
Freshman Kevin Chen, who was also making his OSU debut, contributed the Beavers’ fourth score in the morning with a 3-over 75 and junior Scott Kim added the final number in the afternoon with a 1-over 73. Kim is tied for 44th overall with a 5-over 149 and Chen is tied for 64th with a 10-over 154.
The other five golfers on OSU’s roster are competing as individuals — Brian Jung (141), Conner Kumpula (146), Tyler Carlson (149), Chris Tedesco (153) and Brett Johnson (154).