Epting leads at Jones Creek

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Chase Epting shot 5-under-par 67 on Saturday, stealing the spotlight from fellow South Carolinian Jeff Pope, to take the first-round lead in the Jones Creek Classic.

Epting has a four-shot lead over Lance Johnson and is five ahead of Pope, the defending champion who is seeking his fifth victory in seven Regions Bank Amateur Series starts this season.

While Pope has nine career Regions victories, Epting is seeking his first title. Also chasing Epting are Paul Atchison and Paine College golf coach Herman Belton, who had 73s.

In the senior division, Augusta's Tripp Kuhlke is in position for his second victory in as many senior starts. Kuhlke, who won the Orville White Cup two weeks ago in his senior debut, had 72 on Saturday and has a one-shot lead over Rob Bissell.

Phil Nunnery, Chuck Withers and senior division points leader Glen Hurt had 74s.

The final round is today at Jones Creek Golf Club.

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