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Top 5 teams in 5A event separated by 6 strokes

Everyone figured the race for the 5A state golf championship would be wide-open, but few envisioned Monday's developments during the first day of competition at Mountain Dell Golf Course.

A mere six strokes is all that separates the top five teams heading into today's final round.

"You can't have a runaway, not anymore," said first-year Brighton coach Richard Ball. "There are too many good golfers. I sat and watched in awe at some of the shots today."

Brighton was considered a slight favorite entering the tournament, and Bingham coach Brad Bevan still considers it the team to beat even though his Miners lead Brighton by three shots.

Bingham's 301 was followed by a pair of 304s from Weber and Brighton. Skyline finished fourth with a 307, while Fremont is fifth at 308.

"I'm tickled to death for the kids," said Weber coach Dave Green, who had three of the top eight golfers.

The competition was a tale of two halves. When the shotgun start got under way at 9 a.m., it was a gorgeous day with balmy temperatures and virtually no wind.

Just as people began to make the turn, a big gray cloud accompanied by strong winds parked itself right over the course.

It wasn't a big deal for those working their way back to the clubhouse on No. 14 through 18, but those making the arduous uphill journey from No. 9 to 13 found making par almost impossible.

The wind didn't seem to affect Bingham's Tyson Lund.

The Region 2 medalist birdied his first hole of the day en route to a 4-under 68. The next best score was a 72 from Fremont's Denny Job.

"I've just been putting awesome lately," said Lund, who birdied six holes. "The hole looked like a cereal bowl."

What made the junior's 28 putts so impressive was that all the golfers were talking about how difficult the greens were.

Lund isn't too concerned about hanging on for the individual title as long as Bingham wins the state championship.

"The team is so much more important than the individual award," said Lund, whose 68 set the individual cut at 78. Only three golfers made the cut who weren't associated with one of the nine teams making the cut.

Heading into Tuesday's second round, several golfers are still within striking distance of Lund. Skyline's Andres Hegdhal and Matt Wahlen both shot 73s, while Bingham's Matt Brereton, Weber's Jeff Jones, Brighton's Mike Pannier and Weber's Keaton Woodland all fired 74s.

(For a complete list of results see scoreboard on D5.)