Former Columbus High standout Jimmy Beck blistered the Country Club of Columbus course with a 6-under 65 on Wednesday to take a three-shot lead in the 84th Southeastern Amateur.
Beck, who just finished a stellar sophomore season at Kennesaw State, had seven birdies and one bogey.
He has a three-shot lead over a trio of golfers, including former Brookstone standout Cates Culpepper, Adam Schenk of Vincennes, Ind., and Will Murphy of Columbia, S.C.
A total of 11 golfers broke 70 and 24 shot even-par 71 or better.
The low scoring was a sharp contrast to the past two years when 2 under won in 2012 and 6 under won in 2011. The three years before that the course yielded much lower scores of 13 under, 16 under and 14 under.
Beck won the Pinetree Invitational in October and the Irish Creek Intercollegiate. He just missed qualifying for the U.S. Open, which starts today at Merion in Ardmore, Penn. Beck finished as the first alternate after losing in a playoff.
In Wednesday's round, he started on No. 10 and birdied Nos. 11, 13 and 14 before bogeying the 468-yard, par-4 15th. After a birdie on 17, he made three straight birdies on the front nine on Nos. 2-4.
Culpepper, who transferred to Columbus State after two seasons at Huntingdon College in Montgomery, Ala., played in the group right after Beck.
Culpepper birdied Nos. 11, 12 and 17 on the back and 8 and 9 on the front. He made bogeys on Nos. 15 and 6.
Georgia Tech golfer Seth Reeves, who won the Southeastern Amateur in 2012, is in the group of seven at 2-under 69.
The second round will tee off this morning at 8:10 a.m. After Friday's third round, the field will be cut to the low 60 and ties.