MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Thirteen hours were needed to complete the opening round of the 87th West Virginia Open at Glade Springs Resort in Daniels. But all 135 players completed their rounds despite multiple weather delays.
Kenneth Hess of Parkersburg teed off in the morning wave and fired an opening-round 69 to take a two-shot cushion into Wednesday’s second round. Hess birdied three of his first six holes and carded just one bogey.
Five golfers are tied for second after posting 1-under par rounds of 71. Wheeling’s Thadd Obecny, Petersburg High School graduate Nick Fleming, Pikewood assistant pro Samuel Berry, 13-time state amateur champion Pat Carter and 4-time state amateur champion Sam O’Dell all stand two shots back.
Six more golfers opened the tournament with even par rounds of 72. That group includes defending state amateur champion from Bridgeport Mason Williams and two-time Open champion Christian Brand.
4-time defending champion and 11-time winner David Bradshaw is six shots off the pace after opening the tournament with a 3-over par round of 75. He is tied for 26th. The Shepherd University alumnus was 2-under through 5 holes but struggled down the stretch, shooting 40 on the back 9.
25 players are within 5 shots of the lead. The field will be cut to the top 60 players and ties after Wednesday’s second round. The 54-hole tournament will conclude Thursday.