March 15, 2014
COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina men’s golf team is set to play in its second tournament in less than a week as it will tee off at the Seahawk Intercollegiate on Sunday in Wilmington, N.C.
The Gamecocks will play 36 holes on Sunday and 18 on Monday on the par-72, 6,761-yard Nicklaus Course at the Country Club of Landfall.
After finishing third at the Palmetto Intercollegiate on Tuesday, South Carolina will attempt to do something only one other Carolina team of record has accomplished. The Gamecocks have placed in the top-three in five-straight tournaments and are one shy of matching the 1999 team’s streak of six consecutive finishes of third place or better as the best stretch in school history.
The Gamecocks kept the same lineup for their first two events of the spring, but things will be somewhat different in Wilmington. Freshman Ben Dietrich moves into the lineup this week at No. 5, making the third start of his career. With a tie for fifth showing at the Palmetto Intercollegiate, sophomore Will Starke has earned the No. 1 spot this week. Sophomore Matt NeSmith will occupy the No. 2 spot, followed by juniors Caleb Sturgeon and Will Murphy. Junior Blaine Woodruff will also be competing as an individual.
South Carolina will compete against 12 teams in Wilmington, including five they have played against at least once this season. Carolina is the highest-ranked team in the field at No. 31 in the latest Golfstat rankings. Louisville is the next closest at No. 55. The Cardinals enter the event with three top-three finishes on the season, including a win at the Cardinal Intercollegiate. Army, Campbell, Davidson, Delaware, East Carolina, East Tennessee State, Elon, Navy, Ohio State, Wisconsin and tournament host UNC Wilmington round out the field. The Gamecocks have a 6-0 head-to-head record against teams they’ve competed against in this week’s field.
The Gamecocks are making their fourth appearance in the last five years at the Seahawk Intercollegiate. Carolina has never finished worse than fifth at the event, with its best being a runner-up finish in 2010. The Gamecocks placed fifth the following year and third in 2012. Individually, Wesley Bryan captured medalist honors in 2012, winning with a tournament-record total of 209 (-7).
First-round play begins Sunday with a shotgun start at 8:45 a.m. South Carolina will be paired with Army and UNC Wilmington. Live scoring will not be available for this event.