When Arkansas started its spring season Saturday at the SunTrust Gator Invitational, it marked the first spring competition in nearly two years for sophomore Kolton Crawford.
Crawford, of Mansfield, Texas, red-shirted last season while working on swing changes. The previous year, Crawford was named to the Southeastern Conference All-Freshman team after playing in 10 tournaments and notching two top 10s during the 2011-12 season.
Without Crawford, the Razorbacks advanced to the NCAA Championship last spring. Now, adding to a lineup that includes Taylor Moore, Sebastian Cappelen and Nicolas Echavarria, Crawford has a chance to be a key piece for coach Brad McMakin moving forward.
Crawford’s two top 10s in five starts last fall equaled his total as a freshman. On Saturday, he carded an opening-round 1-over 71 at the Mark Bostick Golf Course in Gainesville, Fla., and found himself inside the top 10 entering the afternoon portion of the 36-hole day.
The Razorbacks, ranked 25th in the Golfweek/Sagarin rankings, were second behind defending champ Florida State.