Another week, another lead: Lopez paces W.E. Cole Cotton States
Andy Lopez (Louisiana Golf Association photo)
Andy Lopez’s name just keeps popping up on leaderboards this summer. Days after winning the Magnolia Amateur – which came right on the heels of qualifying for the U.S. Amateur – Lopez is atop another tournament: the W.E. Cole Cotton States. The Texas Tech player took the first-round lead with a 4-under 68 at Bayou DiSiard Country Club in Monroe, La.
For Lopez, of Dallas, a six-birdie, three-bogey round was enough to get him to the top of the leaderboard. He had a bogey on his second hole of the day, but recovered well. He made back-to-back birdies at Nos. 5 and 6, followed by three straight at Nos. 10-12.
Two years ago at this event – which turns into a match-play tournament after 18 more holes of stroke-play qualifying – Lopez was a quarterfinalist. With another good round, and a top seed, he can hopefully make his path back there – and perhaps beyond – a little easier.
Fellow Texan Chad Sewell, of Conroe, is solo second after a 3-under 69. But for a bogey at the 18th hole, Sewell might have a share of the lead.
Behind that, Benjamin Nelson of Madison, Miss., had a 2-under 70. Eric Brown of Lake Charles, La., was also on that number.
After Thursday’s second round, the field will be cut to the low 32 players and the tournament will reset to match play.
ABOUT THE Cotton States Amateur
Originally played in 1949 as the Bayou
DeSiard Labor Day Golf Tournament, the
name was changed to the Cotton States
Invitational in 1951 by the club's young head
professional, W. E. "Winnie" Cole. He felt that
name better reflected the main states that the
tournament's players originated from (and a
mid-summer made the name a necessity later
anyway). Little did Cole know that 27 years
1978, the event would be renamed again,
be known as the W. E. Cole Cotton States
Invitational Golf Tournament.
Past champions of this highly competitive, yet
tournament include Don January and Hal
Toms and many other PGA Tour players have
competed. The tournament field field is limited
having a verified USGA Handicap Index not
exceeding 0.0. Long a match play event, the
format was changed in 2021 to 72 holes of
View Complete Tournament Information