SALEM, Ore. (May 22, 2012) -– The 61st annual NAIA Men’s Golf National Championships hosted by FORE! Salem kicked off Tuesday at Creekside Golf Club under gray skies, as players fought through rain and wind with the University of Victoria (B.C.) holding a one-stroke lead after the tournament’s opening 18 holes.
The No. 17-ranked Vikes carded a combined team total of 8-over 296 and are one-stroke ahead of No. 1-ranked Oklahoma City and defending national champions Oklahoma Christian, as the Stars and Eagles each posted opening scores of 9-over 297. Rounding out the Top 5 teams are William Woods (Mo.) and Johnson & Wales (Fla.), who are tied for fourth place with identical scores of 10-over 298.
“We played really well today,” said Bryan Carbery, Victoria’s head coach. “This is our weather, it’s the Pacific Northwest. We love it. I feel real good after day one. The boys played real well. We have real talented team. They stepped up in the spring season. We brought in a recruit from the University of Texas, Carson Kallis, he made an immediate impact and helped us a lot.”
Individually, Texas Wesleyan’s Nathan Anderson posted the best round of the opening day with a 2-under 70 that included three birdies over his first four holes before shooting a combined 1-over par on his final 14 holes. The 5-foot-10 junior leads the field by one stroke over Oklahoma Christian’s Vilhelm Bogstrand (71, -1) and a trio of players that includes Johnson & Wales’ Colin Brennan, Victoria’s Darren Hupfer, and Morningside’s (Iowa) Brandon Thompson at even-par 72.
“I feel pretty good about my round today,” said TWU’s Anderson. “I started out real hot. I birdied three of my first four and then just hung on. It started raining and blowing, then I made some bogeys, but I got to 18 and I was two-under. I don’t play in weather like this in Texas, it was wet, I got wet, and it was just really wet out there. It played really long; it was the longest 6,800 yard course I’ve played in my life.”
William Woods’ Morgan Hough and Our Lady of the Lake’s (Texas) John Mulholland would provide the highlights of the day with a pair of hole-in-ones. Hough’s ace came in the morning wave, as the senior registered his first-ever hole-in-one on the par-3, 176-yard sixth hole. In the afternoon wave, Mulholland from Melbourne, Australia, would drain the first ace of his career on the par-3, 161-yard 11th hole to book-end the unusual feat of two hole-in-ones in the same day in national championship play.
The second round will be played on Wednesday, May 23rd, at Creekside Golf Club in Oregon’s Capital City with tee times beginning at 7:00 a.m. PDT on Hole No. 1 and 7:20 a.m. on Hole No. 10.
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