DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- The USC Beaufort men's golf team got off to a solid start at the NAIA Men's Golf National Championship on Tuesday, posting a team score of 7-over-par 295 on the Hills Course at LPGA International.
The Sand Sharks are tied for ninth after Day 1, 13 shots behind leaders Coastal Georgia and William Woods. The Mariners and Owls both took advantage of early tee times and calmer conditions to card team totals of 6-under 282 and hold a five-shot lead over Wayland Baptist (Texas).
Senior Chris Finke led the Sand Sharks with a 1-under-par 71 and is tied for 13th, while junior Brad Curren finished with a 73 and is tied for 25th. Junior Jud Milam (75) is tied for 61st, senior Chandler McDonald (76) is tied for 75th and sophomore Alan Cooke (79) is tied for 111th.
The top-ranked and defending champion Mariners had four players shoot 74 or better with senior Alastair Tidcombe leading the way with a 7-under-par 65 to top the leaderboard. Tidcombe is one shot clear of William Woods sophomore Matt Wells, who fired a 6-under 66 to lead the Owls to a share of the lead.
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Both teams atop the standings teed off early and were able to take advantage of calmer conditions. The scoring average during the morning wave of tee times was 75.96, compared with 76.76 in the afternoon wave.
The second round gets underway at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday with Wayland Baptist (Texas), Tennessee Wesleyan and Northwestern (Iowa) teeing off No. 10. USCB, Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) and Jamestown (N.D.) will lead the morning wave off the first tee at 7:50 a.m.
The afternoon wave begins with Coastal Georgia, Victoria (B.C.) and Marian (Ind.) going off the 10th tee at noon followed by individuals Zach Day of Mobile (Ala.), Kade Crossland of Corban (Ore.) and Daniel Thompsett of Rocky Mountain (Mont.) off the first tee at 12:30 p.m.