JANESVILLE

Andrew Morrison fired a couple early warning shots Friday morning.

The defending champion of the Janesville Men's City Golf Tournament, Morrison opened the 2020 event by making birdie on each of his first two holes at the Janesville Country Club.

The early momentum helped him shoot a 1-under 71 that has him tied with Kevin Riley for the lead after the first of three days. The second round is at Glen Erin Golf Club on Saturday.

"It's easy to let the round get away out at the club if you're missing greens or fairways, so my goal today was just to hit fairways and greens and don't get too aggressive," Morrison said. "But I birdied one and two, so that go the mojo going right out of the gate."

After several close calls, Morrison--who won the 2013 WIAA Division 2 state championship while golfing for Edgerton High--won his first city title in 2019.

Riley, at age 44, is looking for his first and will sleep with the lead for the first time in a dozen or so years of playing in the event, he said.

"I'm always happy in the 70s at the club, so to shoot 71 and do it in a tournament setting, I'm pretty darned satisfied," Riley said. "I've just been playing really well. I did well in the (Ray Fischer Amateur Championship) last month and in the Mid-Amateur a couple weeks ago at Riverside.

"But it's still only Day 1 out of three days. Mentally, I've got to treat it like I didn't even play today and just start all over again tomorrow."

Morrison and Riley will take a two-shot lead into Saturday's second round at Glen Erin. Brian Angileri and 2002 city champ Ryan Coffey are tied for third after shooting 73.

Six-time city champion Sam Van Galder is part of a three-way tie for fifth--with Matt Frank and Cullen Maricque--at 76.

Morrison said the key to breaking par in the first round was playing conservatively.

"I never really went for any greens, and there are a couple driveable par 4s on the back nine, but I laid up on everything," he said. "I just took the birdie opportunities when they came, and most were from about 15 or 20 feet. I made one of those on 16 for birdie and just had a bunch of other chances, and that let me post a solid score."

Similarly, Riley said all facets of his game were working, which set him up for success.

"I hit 14 greens in regulation, so that makes the game a lot less stressful," Riley said. "I only had three birdies, but then again at the club, three birdies is pretty good."

The second round begins at 7 a.m. Saturday at Glen Erin.

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