Big I Junior: Smotherman, Totlan lead

MADISON, Miss. – Austin Smotherman of Loomis, Calif., and Tinton Falls, N.J., native Taylor Totland stole early leads in the Boys and Girls divisions, respectively, after a scorching first day at the 43rd annual Trusted Choice® Big “I” National Championship at Reunion Golf & Country Club.

With temperatures in the high 90s and humidity levels hovering around 50 percent the entire day, the tournament’s 159-player field endured the par-72 course, teeing off in morning and afternoon waves.

Smotherman, a 17-year-old who has verbally committed to play golf at UC Davis, birdied every par-5 and chipped in for eagle on No. 13 on his way to a 35-33—68. He finished his round with back-to-back birdies on Nos. 17 and 18.

ABOUT THE Big I National Championship

72-Hole Championship with a cut after 36 holes. Low 54 boys and 27 girls and all ties will make the cut.

Some 4,000 boys and girls attempt to qualify every year to participate in the 167 player field. The Trusted Choice Big "I" has qualifying opportunities in more than 44 states. If not exempt, you must attempt to qualify through your state of residence.

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