Kinseth in front at FD Am

Red numbers were in short supply in the first round of the 66th Fort Dodge Amateur at the Fort Dodge Country Club on Friday.

Just two golfers in the morning round broke par, and another pair broke par in the afternoon rounds. Only one senior division player landed in the red as well.

After 18 holes, 2014 Lakeside Am champion Ryan Kinseth of Fort Dodge leads the field at three-under par 68. He’s followed by a trio that shot 69: Levi Fink, Ryan Schrimper and Bret Taylor. Fink and Schrimper played in the morning. Kinseth and Taylor competed in the afternoon.

Defending champion Colin Pearson is among a group just three strokes off the pace at even-par 71. Also shooting 71 were George Qien and Algona’s Bill Manske.

Former Lakeside manager Kevin Ault was at 72, along with Dylan Newweg, Scot Glasford and Connor Peck.

Pat Ryan of Marshalltown led the senior division with a one-under 71.

One shot back are Joe Palmer, Tom Kesterson and Scott Morgensen. Defending champ Joel Yunek is three strokes behind, along with Jim Currell.

Kinseth, starting on No. 10, put up a birdie on No. 14, but then took a bogey on No. 1 and 2 after making the turn. He came back strong with and eagle on the par-4 sixth hole and added birdies on Nos. 7 and 9 to finish his round.

“My ball striking was good and I made some putts, but I’d always like to make more,” said Kinseth, who also won the Hampton Open the day before winning at Lakeside last week. “My swing is feeling really good right now. The course was set up really well. There were some pins you could really go at, and some you couldn’t.”

Taylor, a former golf pro from Council Bluffs who regained his amateur status, was solid in the second afternoon group. He carded a birdie on No. 14 and Nos. 6 and 7, but made bogey on eight for his two-under.

Schrimper, from Marion, had an interesting card. He made birdies in No. 6, 7 and 9 on the front and No. 15 on the back. He took a bogey on No. 5 and No. 14, though.

Fink, the 2014 NJCAA?national champion for NIACC who hails from Wadena, also had a chance for a low number. He recorded birdie on six holes, including a string on seven, eight and nine. But he took bogey on No. 1 and No. 4 and a double bogey on No. 14.

Pearson, a 2012 graduate of Fort Dodge Senior High and soon-to-be University of San Diego team member, tied the overall tourney record a year ago with a 14-under par total of 199. He was two-over after making bogey on 15 and 16. He put together three straight birdies to start his second nine and reach two under, but a bogey on No. 7 left him at even par.

“I just wanted to post a good number and stay in contention. That was my goal,” said Pearson. “I had a bogey streak, but finished strong.

“It’s nice to have (last year’s title) on my resume, but I have to come out and prove myself all over again.”

Last year, Pearson fired a nine-under 62 on the second day of the tournament to take control.

Ryan had an interesting round as well to his one-under in the senior division. He had six birdies, including five on the back nine alone. But he posted bogeys on No. 4 and 17 and took a double bogey at No. 9.

Yunek, who has won the last two senior titles here and four crowns overall, made just one birdie in his round – on No. 16. He had three bogeys.

Kinseth will tee off at No. 1 this morning. Schrimper and Fink start in the afternoon, and Taylor tees off in the morning.

Ryan takes the senior lead to the No. 1 tee at 9:20 a.m. Palmer, from West Des Moines, is the only one among the leaders in the senior division that opens in the afternoon. He starts on No. 1 at 1:24.

The top 32 and ties will make the cut for Sunday’s rounds. The top 16 in the senior division move on to Sunday.