McDaniel Leads Way for Wildcats on Day One at SEC Championship

 
ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. – Junior Tyler “Chip” McDaniel paced the Kentucky men’s golf team during the opening day of play at the challenging Sea Island Golf Club home of the 2017 Southeastern Conference Championship on Friday. McDaniel is 1-over par for the tournament through 36 holes and sits inside the top 20 on the individual leaderboard. The Wildcats are in 11th place with 18 holes remaining on Saturday as they vie for one of eight spots in the match-play field on Sunday.
 
What head coach Brian Craig is saying:
 
“We got whipped today. Seaside got the best of us. We battled all day, but were simply not sharp. This team has not had our best round of the year yet. Maybe tomorrow will be the day. We will give it our best shot and stay positive.”

About the lineup:
 
McDaniel came out firing on all cylinders to begin the day with an opening round of 69, 1-under par. He began his day on the No. 10 tee and posted three birdies on the back nine. He fended off two bogeys for the tournament opening under par round. The Wildcats began the second 18 off the first tee, and McDaniel registered an even-par score through the first nine holes. He played the back nine at 2-over par, for his final 2-over score of 72. He leads all UK players at 1-over for the opening day and is tied for 18th on the individual leaderboard. 

Junior Cooper Musselman sits in a tie for 26th after rounds of 73 and 70, respectively. The Louisville, Kentucky, native’s first nine holes of the second round were simply magnificent. He had four birdies, including two over the opening three holes. He then logged red numbers on back-to-back holes at the par-five seventh and the par-four eighth. A double-bogey on the 14th cost him an under par score, but he finished at even par to advance 14 spots on the individual leaderboard. 

Sophomore Fred Allen Meyer, making his first appearance in the SEC Championship, boasted a second-round 71 to move into a tie for 35th. He ascended 13 slots on the leaderboard to help UK improve by three strokes during the second round of action. Meyer’s day was highlighted by consecutive birdies at the No. 9 and No. 10. 

Senior Stephen Stallings performed consistently with two rounds of 76 and is tied for 60th. Sophomore Lukas Euler, also taking on Sea Island for the first time in his career, carded rounds of 78 and 76 and is tied for 66th entering the final 18 holes of play on Saturday. 
 
The Tournament Field:
 
With the SEC Championship mirroring the NCAA Tournament’s format, the field took on 36 holes of play on the opening day of competition. Three teams concluded the day under par. 

No. 15 Texas A&M leads the field through two rounds with a 5-under score. Third-ranked Vanderbilt is two strokes off the Aggies’ pace, while No. 6 Florida garnered a 2-under day. LSU is in fourth, while Alabama and Missouri are tied for fifth at 3-over par. Twelve strokes separate South Carolina, currently in the final spot for the coveted top eight teams for match play, and Kentucky which is in 11th at 21-over par. 
 
About the course:
 
This marks the 17th year for the SEC Championship to be contested on the Sea Island Golf Club's Seaside Course. The SEC has conducted its annual championship on St. Simons Island since 2001 (Seaside Course 2001-2007, 2010-2015; Frederica Golf Club 2008-2009). Since 1927, the Sea Island Golf Club has enjoyed a legacy as one of America's premier golf clubs. 
 
Rated No. 1 in the U.S. among the "World's 50 Best Golf Resorts" by Golf Digest, Sea Island Golf Club offers three exceptional 18-hole championship courses. The Seaside Course, home to the PGA TOUR's McGladrey Classic, is a links course graced by majestic ocean vistas in the tradition of St. Andrews. Sea Island is also the only resort in the world to receive four Forbes Five-Stars nine years in a row.
 
Originally designed in 1929 by famed architects Harry S. Colt and Charles Alison, the Seaside Course was updated in 1999 by Tom Fazio – earning it a prominent place on Golf Digest's list of "Top 100 Courses in the United States." 
 
Fans can follow along with the action on GolfStat.
 
Sea Island Golf Club – Seaside Course
St. Simons Island, Ga. 
April 21-23
Par: 70
Yardage: 7,005
 
11 – Kentucky (292, 289 – 581, +21)
T18 – Chip McDaniel (69, 72 – 141, +1) 
T26 – Cooper Musselman (73, 70 – 143, +3)
T35 – Fred Allen Meyer (74, 71 – 145, +5)
T60 – Stephen Stallings (76, 76 – 152, +12)
T66 – Lukas Euler (78, 76 – 154, +14)
 
For the latest on the Kentucky men's golf team, follow @UKMensGolf on Twitter and on the web at UKathletics.com