Nate Edwards, BYU Photo
Rhett Rasmussen tees off. He finished the first day in sole possession of second place with rounds of 70 (-2) and 66 (-6).

Rhett Rasmussen and Carson Lundell both finished in the top five after the first day of competition at the Nick Watney Invitational in Madera, California, on Monday, putting BYU in second place as a team.

“Rhett kept us in the race this afternoon, and Carson continues to play solid golf,” BYU head coach Bruce Brockbank said. “Hopefully we can put some pressure on first-place Nevada early and make a run tomorrow.”

Rasmussen finished the first day in sole possession of second place with rounds of 70 (-2) and 66 (-6). His second round score was his lowest since he shot a 64 (-8) at the Goodwin Invitational in 2017, a tournament he ended up winning.

Freshman Lundell added another solid outing to his young BYU career with rounds of 70 (-2) and 69 (-3) to tie for third place after the first day of competition. He will look to achieve his second top-10 finish in as many tournaments as a Cougar.

Austin Banz, competing as an individual, found himself just outside the top 10 in 11th place after shooting a 73 (+1) and 68 (-4) in the first two rounds. Chad Hardy was another Cougar to finish in the top 20 on the first day, with a 73 (+1) the first round and 70 (-2) in the second.

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Kelton Hirsch is tied for 24th place after the first day with an even 72 and 73 (+1), while Peter Kuest rounds out the team in 40th after just missing par with a 73 (+1) in the first round and a 75 (+3) in the second. Brockbank hopes to get more from Kuest in the final round tomorrow after the junior took first place at the team’s last tournament.

West Coast Conference foes Gonzaga and Pacific are also competing at the tournament, sitting in ninth and 11th place, respectively. The final round of 18 holes will be played Tuesday, with the leaderboard and live stats found on GolfStat.