Oland Struggles Late at NCAA Tournament - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Oland Struggles Late at NCAA Tournament

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Midwestern State's Derek Oland got off to a great start, but ran into trouble on the back nine in the opening round of the 2014 NCAA Division II Golf Championships at The Meadows in Allendale, Mich. after carding a 5-over-par 76.
 
The junior from McKinney, Texas/Boyd, playing only for the individual title, struggled finding the fairway, particularly on the back nine.
 
"I didn't play well today," said Oland.  "I wasn't putting the ball in the fairway and I didn't putt well and it cost me."
 
While Oland is tied for 36th after the first round, he's still only six strokes off the lead of Mitch Farrer of Nova Southeastern (Fla.) at 1-under 70.  Six others are tied for second at even-par 71, including former Mustang Santiago Gomez, now of Nova Southeastern.
 
"Derek hit the ball long but there was very little roll on the ball after it came down," said MSU Coach Jeff Ray.  "They've had quite a bit of rain a few days ago and the course holds the ball."
 
Oland, playing in the last pairing of the day on the par 71, 7,034 yard course, held the lead through six holes after a birdie on the par-5 4th hole.
 
He lost the lead with a three-putt for a double bogey on the par-3 7th, but got back to even with his final birdie of the day coming in on the par-5 9th.
 
Still just a stroke from the top, the backside bit Oland.
 
"That's when the wind really picked up," said Ray.  "It went from an almost calm wind to 20 miles an hour after the turn."
 
The course, just 16 miles from the Lake Michigan coast, plays its longest on the back side.
 
Bogeys on the 11th and 13th were bad, then came the 14th.
 
"I hit the ball in the rough on the left," said Oland.  "It was really long and I tried to hit a 4-iron out, but it went about 14 yards and stayed in the rough.  I punched out and got on, but 3-putted."
 
It cost him another double bogey.  His putting woes continued on the 17th to finish at 5-over for the round.
 
"This is a tough course and very demanding," said Ray.  "You can't get in the wrong spot."
 
"But it can all change with a great round tomorrow. I've seen Derek bounce back before and I think he can."
 
On the team side, Nova Southeastern posted a 287 to take a four-stroke lead over Chico State (Calif.) at 291 and five over Barry (Fla.) at 292.