Darius Rucker Intercollegiate boasts another strong field

Ten of nation’s top 20 teams highlight 2020 tournament

Darius Rucker Intercollegiate boasts another strong field

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WTOC) - Some of the nation’s best college golfers and teams have made their way to Hilton Head Island once again to chase one of the game’s most sought after titles.

Things have teed off at the 9th annual Darius Rucker Intercollegiate at the Long Cove Club. Ten of the top 20 teams in the country highlights this year’s field, including the top ranked Texas Longhorns and defending national champion Duke Blue Devils.

It’s the strength of that field tournament officials believe keep the teams and the crowds coming back every year.

“It’s been said that next to the NCAA Championships, this may be the best field in women’s college golf. And we’re very proud of that," says Long Cove Club head professional Bob Patton. "I think the reputation of the event has gotten to where if you can win and beat this field, then you’re a force to be reckoned with.”

Patton says that strong field and the attention that comes with the top teams and players in the college game has made the tournament one of the nation’s biggest showcases for women’s college golf.

“Believe me, these girls can absolutely play. It is a high level of quality golf. And it’s fun to watch,” Patton says. "They’re exceptional players. You can learn a thing or two coming out and watching these girls, I can promise you.”

Vanessa Knecht fired a three-over 74 to help lead the Demon Deacons to an 18-hole lead. Teammate Rachel Kuehn (-2) is the individual leader after one round.
Vanessa Knecht fired a three-over 74 to help lead the Demon Deacons to an 18-hole lead. Teammate Rachel Kuehn (-2) is the individual leader after one round. (Source: WTOC)

First round play wrapped up Friday afternoon with the Wake Forest Demon Deacons jumping out to an early lead. The Deacs fired a three-over 287 on Friday, five shots better than UCLA.

Wake was led by freshman Rachel Kuehn. The Asheville, NC native fired four birdies in the opening round and leads individually by one stroke at -2.

Host South Carolina is tied for 11th after the first round. The fourth-ranked Gamecocks are +19, 16 shots back of Wake.

TEAM LEADERBOARD (after Round 1)

1. Wake Forest +3 287

2. UCLA +8 292

T3. Auburn +10 294

T3. Baylor +10 294

T3. Texas +10 294

6. North Carolina +12 296

T7. LSU +15 299

T7. Duke +15 299

9. Arkansas +16 300

10. Vanderbilt +18 302

T11. South Carolina +19 303

T11. Furman _+19 303

13. Florida State +20 304

14. Virginia +24 308

T15. Alabama +27 311

T15. Northwestern +27 311

T15. Georgia +27 311

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