Clemson, S.C.—Freshman Zack Gordon shot an eight-under par 63, Turk Pettit added a 65 and freshman Jacob Bridgeman a 66 to lead Clemson to a record setting 262 team score in the first round of the Ka’anapali Classic in Lahaina, Hawaii on Friday. The Tigers have a four-shot lead over California and six over Georgia after the first round.
Clemson and the other 19 teams will play the second round on Saturday on the par 71 course that is 6700 yards in length.
Clemson shot 22-under-par in firing the 262 team score, the lowest team round in school history in terms of total score and score vs. par. The program dates to 1930. The previous record of 20-under-par and 264 was established on the same course two years ago when the Tigers had a 20-under-par 264 in the third round on the way to the team victory. Clemson also shot 20 under par (268) in the second round of the 2006 ACC Tournament at the Old North State Club in Uwharrie Point, NC.
Gordon’s round of 63 included seven birdies and an eagle. He became just the sixth player in Clemson history to shoot 63 or better. Three of the six are on the current Clemson team. William Nottingham had a 62 at the Wolfpack Spring Invitational in 2017 and Bryson Nimmer had a 63 earlier this year at the Maui Jim Collegiate in Arizona.
Gordon played the front nine in six-under-par 31. He had just one bogey for the round, on the par four 18th hole, his 16th hole of the day. It was Gordon’s low round this year by six shots. All 20 teams and 111 players started at the same time at holes throughout the course at 8:30 a.m Hawaii time in a “shot-gun” start format.
Pettit actually led the Clemson team in birdies with nine, but he made three bogeys in shooting his career best tying 65. He had nine hole scores of 33-32.
Bridgeman had six birdies, an eagle and three bogeys in scoring five-under-par 66 on Friday. It was his best round of the year by a shot. He made birdies on holes five, six and seven, the only Tiger to make three consecutive birdies on the day.
Bryson Nimmer, Clemson’s top golfer who is ranked No. 2 in the nation by Golfstat entering the round, had a 68 to match his season average. Nimmer got off to a slow start, playing the first five holes at two-over-par, but he played the last 13 at five under. It was his ninth round in the 60s this year.
William Nottingham made pars on his last 11 holes and had a solid round of 70.
Clemson’s five players combined for 30 birdies and two eagles, the most under-par holes for a round in school history. The Tigers played the par four holes at 13 under par and the par fives at 12 under.