CONOVER, N.C. -- Belmont Abbey golfers Nick Stafford and Levi Kettelhut opened NCAA South/Southeast Regional play Monday shooting even par 71 on the Robert Trent Jones, Jr. Course at the Rock Barn Golf & Spa. The scores put them in a tie for 11th place with eight others, all four shots off the lead.
After parring the first hole, Stafford bogeyed the next two before three straight pars. He bogeyed No. 7 to make the turn at +3, but rallied on the back nine. He posted birdies on 12, 14 and 18 to pull back to even.
Kettelhut's 71 came in similar fashion as he was two-over on the front after bogeys at Nos. 5 and 7 to turn at 35. He pulled back with birdies on 11 and 14, but went back to +1 with a bogey at 16. Like Stafford, he birdied his final hole to post the 71.
The second of three rounds takes place on Tuesday with both players starting on the 10th tee. Kettelhut begins at 1:10, while Stafford in the final pairing at 1:30.