CONOVER, N.C. - - The Wilmington University golf team sits in 16th place after the first day of the NCAA Division II National Tournament, shooting a 302 on Monday morning at the Rock Barn Golf & Spa.
The Wildcats were led by freshman Joey Russo who came into the clubhouse with a 72 (+1), sitting in a tie for 29th overall. Sophomore Freddy Braun came in with a 76 (+5) while junior Andreas Lunding and sophomore Sam Clark rounded out the team scoring with a pair of 77 (+6). Alexander Lautenschlaeger was the fifth Wilmington player on the course, shooting an 83 (+12) but did not factor into the team score.
Starting the on the 10th tee, Russo bogeyed the 11th hole but than pared the rest of the back nine, making the turn with a 37 (+1). Russo then birdied the first and sixth holes to go one-under par, but then bogeyed holes seven and nine to finish with a 35 (E) score on the front.
Braun's lone mistake came on hole 14, as he double bogeyed the par-five, finishing the back nine with a 38 (+2). He bogeyed three holes on the front to finish with a 76 (+5), tied for 64th overall.
Lunding birdied the 12th hole, but then bogeyed three of the final six holes on the back, making the turn with a 38 (+2). He bogeyed four holes on the front nine to finish with his 77 (+6) to sit in a tie for 75th overall.
Clark started the day bogey-bogey, but then birdied the par-four 12th to sit at one-over par. After three straight pars, Clark triple-bogeyed 16, finishing the back nine at 40 (+4). He then rebounded to shoot a 37 (+2) on the front, hitting seven pars to sit in a tie for 75th overall with a 77 (+6).
Lautenschlaeger birded hole number two, but finished the front nine seven-over par. His 83 (+12) has him in a tie for 105th overall.
After the first round of play, Russo is 19th overall on the par-four holes, averaging 4.00 stroke per hole. Braun is tied for fifth overall on making pars, hitting 14 pars on during the first round.
Nova Southeastern leads the tournament with a 279 (-5) score as a team, four strokes ahead of second place Lynn. South Carolina Aiken is in third and broke even at 284 for the day. Central Missouri's Sam Migdal leads the individual race, shooting a first round low 66 (-5) on Monday, besting a pair of Nova Southeastern players by two strokes.
The Wildcats tee off late on Tuesday, starting on the first team with a tee-time of 12 p.m. Follow the Wildcats and all the NCAA Division II National Tournament action live by following GolfStat: http://www.ncaa.com/2015-dii-mens-golf-championships-team-leaderboard.