Chants sit 29th following rough first round at NCAAs

The Coastal Carolina men’s golf team opened the 2013 NCAA Championship with a 13-over par 293 at the 7,319-yard, par 70 Capital City Club Crabapple Course.

The Chants are in 29th place in the first of three stroke-play rounds. The top eight teams after 54 holes of play on Thursday will advance to the match-play final.

Arizona State leads the 30-team with a 10-under par 270, followed by host Georgia Tech, Alabama, Illinois, California, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Texas.

The Chants got off to a strong start, but afternoon winds led to a tough final nine holes.

Ben Wheeler led the CCU contingent with an even par 70 to stand in a tie for 33rd. The sophomore was 2-under at the turn thanks to birdies on the sixth and seventh holes. He started the inward nine with a bogey, but got back to 2-under with a birdie on the par 3 13th hole. Wheeler finished with bogeys on the 15th and 18th holes for his round of 70.

Sebastian Soderberg, who was named PING/Golf Coaches Association of America All-Region earlier in the day, and Andrew Dorn are tied for 113th, each shooting a 4-over 74. Soderberg was even through 15 holes with two birdies, two bogeys and 11 pars, but the senior posted back-to-back double bogeys to settle for his 74. Dorn had three bogeys on the front nine and added another on the par 4 11th hole. After two pars, the sophomore birdied the par 4 14th, but dropped a shot on the par 4 15th for his 74.

Peter Valasek and Roberto Ballesteros are both one stroke behind Soderberg and Dorn. Valasek and Ballesteros recorded a first round 75 and both are tied for 126th.

Coastal Carolina will play in the afternoon session Wednesday with Wheeler getting the Chants started at 2 pm on hole 10.

Photo by Joel Beachum

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