Four teams, three of which are composed of Austin Country Club players, are tied at eight under par after the first round lead of the Muny Spring Partnership. Two more teams are one shot behind at seven under and then there are five teams at six under.
One of the leading teams, Michael Cooper and Austin Cotton, represent a pairing of a veteran golfer with a younger player. Cooper and Cotton both play at Austin Country Club and decided to pair for this tournament. Cooper, who is a two time winner of the Firecracker and former city champion has paired with younger players in this tournament before and enjoys sharing the tradition of the tournament with the next generation of golfers.
The same is true of Jamie Beaman and Matthew Perrine. Beaman, a local architect and former member of the University of Texas golf team, is enjoying the fine play of Perrine who is a senior at Westlake and will to play at Auburn University.
Brian Noonan, the current Harvey Penick Champion and three time winner of the Austin Men’s City Championship along with the Firecracker is paired with Riley Pumphrey. Pumphrey is the current club champion at Austin Country Club and played college golf in Oklahoma. His father, Jay Pumphrey is a former winner of the Harvey Penick Senior Division and playes at Cimarron.
The final team at eight under is Benestante and Guthrie, who finished late in the day and posted the last round of eight under par to tie for the lead.
After the round players like Cary Petri, Tony Pitifer and Marshall Hinton enjoyed a post round beverage and chatted with the various players as they finished the round and posted their scores. The banter around the scoreboard is one of the favorite parts of the tournament as all the players lament missed shots or poor play and celebrate the putts they holed.
Jim Thomas and Jay Barnes, shown here after they hit their tee shot at #10 love playing in this tournament because of the fun atmosphere. They finished the first round tied for 5th in the first flight so Sunday will be interesting for them.
Play concludes today with the leaders teeing off around 1:30. See the full field scores and tee times at this link.