Windham native Shawn Warren, a teaching pro at the Falmouth Country Club, shot a two-under par 69 in the first round of the Live and Work in Maine Open Korn Ferry Tournament at the Falmouth Country Club to put himself in position to earn a spot for the weekend.
Caleb Manuel, 19, from Topsham and Portland Country Club pro Dan Venezio both struggled mightily and tied for 150th in the 156-man field with 14-over-par 85s.
Manuel, one of three amateurs in the field, and Venezio will play their second rounds on Friday but neither will qualify to play on Saturday.
Warren will qualify to play on Saturday if he shoots a respectable round on Friday.
The players are pursuing a total purse of $600,000 wth the winner taking home $108,000.
Warren is chasing a group of four atop the leaderboard at seven-under par 64. That list includes Steve LeBrun, Brett Stegmaier, Brent Grant and Jim Knous.
He shot a two-under par 33 on the front nine with birdies on the first, second, sixth and ninth holes to go with bogeys on the fourth and eighth holes. He shot an even-par 36 on the back nine with a birdie and a bogey.
Manuel, who was the Big East Freshman of the Year at the University of Connecticut along with a first team All-Big East and All-Northeast Region selection, shot an even-par 35 on the front nine with a birdie and a bogey but the back nine was a nightmare with three triple bogeys, two double bogeys and a bogey for a plus-14.
Venezio was plus-8 on the back nine and plus-6 on the front nine.
He had three double bogeys and three bogeys on the back nine to go with one birdie. He had two triple bogeys and a bogey on the front nine along with a birdie.
This is the first time a Korn Ferry Tournament has been held in Maine and this is the first year of a five-year arrangement between the tour and the Falmouth Country Club.
The Korn Ferry Tour is one notch below the PGA Tour and the top 25 money-winners during the regular season and top 25 in money-winnings during its three championship tournaments will earn PGA tour cards for next season.
The top five money-winners on the tour aren’t in the Live and Work in Maine field, but 16 of the next 20 on the money list are playing.
Warren was a former co-captain at Marshall University in West Virginia.