Keiser (Fla.) Leads After Day 1 at National Championships
Story by Brian Thiessen, NAIA Media Coordinator
SILVIS, Ill. -- (Team Results) (Individual Results) (Second Round Pairings) (Watch Day 1 Video Recap) Golfers took advantage of the conditions on the first day of the 2018 NAIA Men's Golf National Championship. With perfect temperatures and not facing much wind, a total of 20 players carded scores under par at TPC Deere Run Tuesday. The majority of those scores came in the morning wave, including a tournament-leading 5-under 66 recorded by sophomore Jack Dyer of Keiser (Fla.).
Dyer started on the back nine and opened with a bogey on No. 10 before getting on a roll.
"I knew I could get it going if I stayed patient, and it happened," Dyer said.
Following his bogey, Dyer recovered with back-to-back birdies on No. 11 and 12 on his way to a 2-under 34 on the back. An eagle on No. 2 led to a 3-under 32 on the front nine, for his 66.
"This is a great course and there were perfect scoring conditions today," Dyer said. "I hit the ball really well. Then three putts from about 15-20 feet dropped for me. That was an added bonus."
Dyer will take a one-shot lead over Alec Dutkowski, of Taylor (Ind.), into Wednesday's second round. A trio of golfers - Mitch Lamping of Taylor, Erik Jonasson of Keiser and Chip Thompson of Coastal Georgia - sits two shots back after opening with 3-under 68s.
"I was staying patient, having fun and enjoying the beautiful day, but the key word is patient," Dutkowski said. "I had no bogeys today so it was a stress-free round. I had a lot of good looks and they started falling on the back, but the key is staying patient."
A group of six golfers shot 2-under 69s, and nine others finished with 70s. Defending national champion Rowan Lester of Texas Wesleyan opened with a 2-over 73.
Behind the play of Dyer and Jonasson, Keiser fired a 5-under 279 as a team, one shot better than both Coastal Georgia and Taylor. Dalton State (Ga.) shot an even-par 284. Wayland Baptist (Texas) rounds out the top five with a 288.
St. Ambrose University and the Quad Cities Convention & Visitors Bureau are serving as hosts of the National Championship, which are being competed at TPC Deere Run, the host course for the PGA Tour's John Deere Classic, for the third straight year and the sixth time in the last 10 years.
Second-round action in the four-round national tournament gets underway Wednesday at 7:30 a.m. CT.