Elgin, SC August 29, 2013 – In the NGA Pro Golf Tour’s Pro Series season finale, a trio of golfers looking for their first wins on the top-rated developmental tour were tied atop the leaderboard at the conclusion of the Woodcreek Classic on Thursday.
Roberto Diaz, Jamie Sindelar and Blake Sattler recorded 8-under 63s in the opening round of the $150,000 event at The Members Club at Woodcreek and WildeWood to earn a share of the first-round lead.
Diaz, a former USC-Aiken standout from Myrtle Beach, went bogey-free in the first round of play and carded six birdies and one eagle. Diaz has been knocking on the door of his first win, posting four top-20s, including a solo fourth, in four Pro Series starts this year.
Sindelar, the son of seven-time PGA TOUR winner Joey Sindelar, also traversed the par-71 layout without a blemish in the first round. The Ohio State alumnus from Horseheads, N.Y., went out in 33 and closed with a 5-under 30 to earn a share of the lead. Sindelar’s best finish of the season is a T6 in the Avoca Classic.
Like Sindelar and Diaz, Sattler, of New Philadelphia, Ohio, avoided any mistakes in the opening round and rolled in eight birdies. The University of Akron has a pair of top-20 finish on the NGA TOUR this season.
Multi-time NGA TOUR winners Brandon Brown and Jeff Corr finished the day in a tie for fourth with Chris Wolfe and Julian Etulain after posting 7-under 64s in the first round. Brown, a former Eastern Kentucky standout from Shelbyville, Ky., carded seven birdies, one eagle and a double bogey in the opening round.
Corr, a Jacksonville State alumnus from Longwood, Fla., opened with four birdies, two eagles and a bogey on Thursday; Wolfe, a former Armstrong State standout from Warner Robins, Ga., posted three birdies, three eagles and a double bogey in the first round; and Etulain, of Buenos Aries, Argentina, recorded eight birdies and one bogey.
University of South Carolina alums Mark Silvers and Kyle Thompson finished the first round in a tie for eighth at 6-under par. Silvers, of Savannah, Ga., and Greenville’s Thompson both carded five birdies, one eagle and a bogey in the first round. Kevlin Day, Chas Narramore, Bubba Dickerson, Will Mitchell, Philip Francis and Brandon Detweiler also opened with 6-under 65s to join Silvers and Thompson in a tie for eighth.
Patton Kizzire, Jonathan Fly, Luciano Giometti, Mason Jacobs, Chris Erwin, Ben Silverman, Justin Hueber, Shawn Jasper, Gregor Main, Connor Arendell and defending Woodcreek Classic champion Jonathan Randolph posted a 5-under 66s on Thursday and finished the opening round in a tie for 16th.
The second round of the Woodcreek Classic will begin at 7:30 a.m. on Friday. As always, admission is free to the public.
The NGA Pro Golf Tour is the No. 3 Men’s Professional Golf Tour in the United States after the PGA and Web.com Tours and is the No. 1 recommended developmental tour by more PGA and Web.com Tour Professionals.
The NGA has helped hundreds of professionals acquire their PGA TOUR, Euro, Web.com, and Champions Tour cards. In fact, NGA alumni have won an incredible Fifteen (15) “Major” Championships.
NGA alumni include: 2012 Masters champion Bubba Watson; 2011 PGA Championship winner Keegan Bradley; 2010 PGA TOUR Player of the Year and 2003 US Open Champion Jim Furyk; 2009 British Open Champion Stewart Cink; 2009 U.S. Open Champion Lucas Glover; 2007 Masters Champion Zach Johnson; 2003 PGA Champion Shaun Micheel; 2003 British Open Champion Ben Curtis; two-time U.S. Open Champion Lee Janzen; British Open and PGA Champion John Daly; British Open Champion Tom Lehman; PGA Champion David Toms; 2003 Tour Championship Winner Chad Campbell; 2010 NGA Player of the Year Michael Thompson; 2012 PGA TOUR winners Mark Wilson, George McNeill, Ted Potter Jr., Scott Stallings and Scott Piercy.
At this year’s PGA Tour Qualifying School, 52% of those earning full exempt status on the PGA TOUR and 67% of those earning full exempt status on the Web.com Tour were past NGA Professionals. Another 16 NGA Professionals advanced to the PGA TOUR for 2012 by finishing inside the Top 25 on the Web.com Tour money list, including 2011 NGA members Ted Potter Jr., Russell Knox and Billy Hurley III.
The NGA Pro Golf Tour, established in 1988, predates the Web.com Tour as the longest running developmental tour in golf. In 2012, the NGA TOUR became the “Official Partner of the 2012 Reno-Tahoe Open” and secured one PGA TOUR and six Web.com Tour event exemptions for its members, the most in developmental golf.
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