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Oct. 12, 2007

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. – With a career-best round of 68, South Carolina sophomore Patrick Rada holds a share of second place after the first round of the Bank of Tennessee Intercollegiate at The Ridges. In his season debut, Rada lowered his career-best round by three strokes and sits just one stroke behind the leader. The Gamecocks are in 10th place heading into Saturday’s second round, nine shots behind tournament leader East Tennessee State.

With the Gamecocks starting on the 10th tee, Rada used the first nine holes to warm up, taking the turn at even par. After posting a birdie on the par-4 first hole, the sophomore never looked back, adding three more birdies over the next five holes to card the best round of his career.

Junior Allen Koon is four strokes behind Rada in 23rd place with an even-par 72. Koon picked up a pair of birdies on the back nine and tossed in one more on No. 8 but bogeyed his final hole to finish at even par.

Senior Mark Anderson got off to a good start, playing at -1 through his first seven holes before a triple bogey on the par-4 17th derailed his steady round. The experienced veteran responded with a birdie on No. 9 but could not get back under par for the round. His 75 (+3) has him in 52nd place.

Sophomore George Bryan IV is one shot behind Anderson in 62nd place. Four bogeys and a double bogey dominated a pair of birdies to bring Bryan in a 76 (+4) for the round. Senior Warren Thomas carded a 78 in the first round as his three birdies were overshadowed by three bogeys and three double bogeys.

Just nine strokes off the pace, the Gamecocks will look to make a move in Saturday’s second round. Fellow Southeastern Conference member Kentucky is in second place, one shot behind ETSU, and boasts the individual leader in Ben Fuqua, who carded a 67 on Friday.