NORMAN – The No. 6 Oklahoma men’s golf team started strong on Sunday at the Puerto Rico Classic, grabbing the lead after the opening round of play. The three-day, 54-hole tournament is taking place at the par-71, 6,716-yard Ocean Course at the Rio Bar Beach Resort and Spa in Rio Grande, P.R.
Against a competitive field with five top-25 opponents, all five Sooners shot under par during the opening day of action to propel OU into the lead with a first-round score of 274 (-10). OU’s 274 ranks as the 10th-best round in the history of the Puerto Rico Classic and is the second-lowest 18-hole score by the Sooners this season.
“Any time you have a group of guys that all get it under par, that makes it a special day,” OU head coach Ryan Hybl said. “Everyone did a nice job today to get us started.”
Senior Grant Hirschman and junior Blaine Hale are tied for third place on the individual leaderboard after posting rounds of 68 (-3). Hirschman closed the day with birdies on four of his final six holes to conclude his first round of the spring season. Hale was consistent during the first 18 holes, picking up four birdies to finish with his fourth round in the 60s this season.
Junior Brad Dalke and redshirt sophomore Thomas Johnson are tied for ninth place at 69 (-2). Dalke, who recorded his ninth round in the 60s this season, picked up six birdies in his round. In his first round of the season, Johnson’s 69 marked his lowest 18-hole score as a Sooner.
Redshirt sophomore Quade Cummins carded a 70 (-1) to round out OU’s lineup in the first round and is tied for 21st place heading into Monday’s second day of action.
North Carolina State and Georgia Tech are two strokes behind the Sooners and tied for second place at 276 (-8). Host Purdue is fourth after round one, posting a 277 (-7). Clemson and East Carolina share fifth place after shooting 284 (E) on Sunday.
The second round of the Puerto Rico Classic will begin Monday at 7 a.m. CT with a shotgun start. The Sooners will be paired with North Carolina State and Georgia Tech.
Playing in the individual tournament at the par-72, 6,902-yard River Course, OU’s trio of Riley Casey, Garett Reband and Rylee Reinertson claimed the top three spots on the leaderboard after the first 18 holes.
Reinertson posted a season-low score of 68 (-4) to take a one-shot lead after round one. The senior closed strong on the back nine, finishing with five birdies down the stretch.
Casey is one shot back of Reinertson after shooting 69 (-3) on Sunday. Reband finished with a 70 (-2) to grab sole possession of third place heading into Monday’s second round.