Canadian mid-amateur and one of last year's runners-up Garrett Rank (Conner Penfold photo)
There are three players with the first name Jackson in the 117-person field this week at the 55th Dogwood Invitational. After round one, all three of them are in the top-10, including Wednesday's co-leaders Jackson Buchanan
and Jackson Klutznick
Their opening-round scores of 6-under 66 gave them a slim edge over a slew of talented players lurking atop a bunched leaderboard, most notably one of two runners-up from last year's tournament — Canadian mid-amateur stalwart Garrett Rank
In total, eight players are within two shots of the lead, and an additional 31 are within four.
Buchanan, a sophomore at the University of Illinois, was one of the morning's earlier times and went bogey-free in his first competitive round at Druid Hills. A native of Dacula, Ga., a town of roughly 5,000 residents about 40 miles northeast of Atlanta, Buchanan stepped onto the property for the first time Monday to play two holes before getting in a full practice 18 Tuesday during the Dogwood Am-Am.
"I didn't know what to expect coming here," Buchanan said. "I just knew it was a local club in Atlanta. But after showing up and seeing the facility, I was absolutely blown away."
Buchanan's highlight came at the sweeping dogleg left par-5 7th where his greenside bunker shot fell in for an eagle.
"It was my first chip-in since, I don't know, March or February," he added. "It's been a while, I swear."
Klutznick teed off shortly after lunchtime and birdied five holes on the front side to go out in 31. The Denver, Colo. native attends Emory University, just a mile and a half up the road from Druid Hills and practically a stone's throw from the furthest north section of the property where the 14th green and 15th tee box reside.
"I've always wanted to play this course," Klutznick said. "I've heard from my teammates how amazing it is and how good the competition is, so it's really special to be here with two of my teammates and our coach."
Rank hit the tournament's third shot of day, teeing at 8:00 a.m. with fellow mid-ams Stephen Behr
and Samuel Jones
. The trio turned in their cards following a dreamy four-hour pace, as most opening groups do. The Elmira, Ontario resident got off to an admittedly slow start, but the sun came out on the back nine and so did the birdies.
"I just stayed with it and stayed patient, knowing there were a bunch of birdies on the back nine," Rank said, who circled numbers at 10, 12, 14, 15, and 18 on his inward nine.
Tied with Rank at 5-under are Wake Forest sophomore Scotty Kennon
, Howard University senior Gregory Odom, Jr.
, and Auburn junior Carson Bacha
Lape riding whirlwind couple of days in Atlanta
One of four players at 4-under is Furman senior Sam Lape
, who didn't know he was playing The Dogwood until fewer than 24 hours before his eventual tee time.
Lape shot 71 in the May 23 Dogwood Open Qualifier, tying for sixth place and being sent into a playoff for the remaining spot. He would lose on the second extra hole, settling for an alternate position.
"I got off the course at a Georgia State Amateur qualifier and got the email that I was in," Lape said.
Lape won that qualifier, firing 6-under 66 with an eagle on the drivable par-4 11th at BridgeMill Athletic Club in Canton, Ga. He made two more eagles Wednesday as part of his opening-round 68 at Druid Hills.
"I'm really glad that I got into The Dogwood because I'm playing some really good golf right now," Lape said.
ABOUT THE Dogwood Invitational
Tournament week is June 6-11 at Druid Hills Golf
Atlanta, Georgia. The entry fee includes breakfast
tournament days as
as special events.
The history of this prestigious event extends back to
1941, when legendary amateur Tommy Barnes
captured his first of five Dogwood titles. Evolving
the times, the modern Dogwood has produced fine
champions like Webb Simpson (’07), Brian Harman
(’09), Dawson Armstrong (’15), and in 2019 Brandon
seen also in our course renovations and set-up, our
relaxed tournament atmosphere, and our spirit of
Players are required to walk during tournament play
and may carry their golf bag themselves (push
allowed) or take a caddie. Caddies may be requested
in advance during registration, or players may
one on their own.
Player housing is provided on an as available basis to
, caddies and traveling
companions are not
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