A former Big Ten player of the year looks right at home in Columbus this week

David Lipsky’s mettle held out longer than his metal during the first round of the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship Thursday at the Ohio State Scarlet Course.

Lipsky broke the face of his titanium driver on his last hole of the day, which may have contributed to his drive sailing into the left rough, but the 33-year-old Northwestern graduate got up and down from behind the green to finish at 8 under par and head to Friday’s second round of the Korn Ferry Tour Finals tied with Stephan Jaeger after matching 63s.

“Never had that happen before,” Lipsky said of the broken driver, which he replaced after the round with a driver from an old set of clubs kept by his college teammate Jonathan Bowers, a Watterson graduate who lives close to Scarlet.

“Luckily for me, my roommate from Northwestern is from Columbus and he has my old clubs, so he has a few backups I can try (on Friday),” Lipsky said.

Lipsky and Jaeger lead a field of 137 players jockeying for position in the Finals, a three-event playoff format in which the top 25 finishers earn PGA Tour cards.

The two leaders, who already secured their cards through the regular-season points standings, are familiar with sharing the lead at the end of a round. Jaeger defeated Lipsky in a playoff to win the Emerald Coast Classic in Destin, Florida in April.

PGA Tour veteran Bo Van Pelt and 24-year-old Englishman Harry Hall sit two shots back after carding 65s. Ohio State graduate Ryan Armour shot 66 and former Buckeye Bo Hoag shot 69. Defending NCHC champion Curtis Luck shot 66.

Thursday’s round experienced a weather delay of 1:08 as lightning passed through the area.

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