College Men

Koepka takes early lead at Patriot All-America

Brooks Koepka at the NCAA Championship.
Brooks Koepka at the NCAA Championship. ( Tracy Wilcox )

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

LITCHFIELD PARK, Ariz. -- Florida State senior Brooks Koepka birdied the final hole Wednesday to take a one-shot lead after the opening round of the inaugural Patriot All-America Invitational.

Koepka, who won earlier this season at the Brickyard Collegiate and is No. 5 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings, fired a 4-under 67 on the Gold Course at Wigwam Golf Club to hold a one-shot lead over Texas A&M sophomore Johannes Veerman.

Co-hosted by the Folds of Honor Foundation, the 84-player Patriot All-America Invite is unique in that each player uses a golf bag with the name and branch of service of a fallen military member. These bags will be auctioned off at the conclusion of the event, with all proceeds designated for the Folds of Honor.

Twelve players broke par in the opening round, and the top of the leaderboard features several of the most prominent players in college golf. Among those within three shots of the lead include Alabama sophomores Cory Whitsett (winner at Western Refining) and Bobby Wyatt, and Stanford junior Andrew Yun. Stanford freshman Patrick Rodgers, at No. 4 the highest-ranked player in the field, shot a 73 in Round 1 and is tied for 25th. readers: We value your input and welcome your comments, but please be respectful in this forum.