Zoller, Bucs open The Hootie in record-setting fashion

Senior Taylor Zoller tied a school record with an 8-under 64 and Charleston Southern set a team single-round record, finishing at 15-under par to hold the first round lead at The Hootie on Sunday at Bulls Bay.

The Buccaneers hold a four-shot lead over No. 16 South Carolina (-11) after a 273 (-15), the lowest team round in school history by five strokes.

A career-best round from Keenan Huskey boosted the Gamecocks (277) as the sophomore fired a 7-under 65.

Four players finished under par to give CSU the outright lead in the 15-team field that includes four top 20 teams and eight ranked teams. No. 10 Wake Forest and Missouri are both tied for third at 4 under, while No. 20 Duke and No. 37 N.C. State are both tied for fifth at 1 over, 16 shots behind the Bucs.

Zoller matched the lowest round in CSU history with his 8-under 64. He made nine birdies over his final 15 holes. His lone blemish was a bogey on the par-3 seventh. He bounced back with birdies on his final two holes to tie Stuart Carrihill (2007) for the lowest round, to par, by a Buc.

Zoller leads by one over South Carolina’s Keenan Huskey and Auburn’s Matt Gilchrest, both of whom are 7 under.

Sophomore R.J. Keur is in sole possession of fourth after an impressive 68 (-4). He had five birdies and didn’t have a bogey after his second hole of the day, shooting a 3-under 33 on his back nine. Keur is four strokes back of Zoller.

Junior Austin James finds himself in familiar position, inside the top 10. He’s tied for seventh and pieced together a solid 70 (-2). He had two bogeys in his first three holes, but played the rest of his round with three birdies and without a bogey. The round was James’ sixth consecutive under par in tournament play.

Junior Philip Oweida paced the College of Charleston, sinking six birdies en route to shooting a 2-under 70.

Oweida is tied for seventh on the individual leaderboard, while the Cougars are seventh in the team standings after carding a 2-over 290.

Senior John Jonas and junior William Rainey are both tied for 30th with a first-round 73 (+1).

Other first-day highlights for the Cougars included sophomore Anthony Gabriele making a hole-in-one on the par-3 14th. He is tied for 38th individually at +2.