After long day, Wheeler, Ortego lead the CWI

After a long day at a tough Nicklaus Course at The Club at Carlton Woods, a pair of Texans will take leads into the final round of the Carlton Woods Invitational.
A line of thunderstorms moved through the area on day one of the three-day championship, altering the schedule and forcing the Committee to scramble for a solution to complete 54 holes in each division.

The seniors were able to complete their first round on Tuesday, and finish their second rounds on schedule today. The mid-amateurs played 36 holes today, turning the tournament into a bit of an endurance test as the three rounds will have been played in just over 24 hours’ time.

Chris Wheeler (Addison, Texas) is the 36-hole leader after rounds of 67-74 (-3). Wheeler won the Texas Mid-Amateur in 2019 and made a great run at the Texas Amateur earlier that summer, finishing solo second.

He’ll carry a one-stroke lead into the final round over Harley Abrams (Tulsa, Okla.), a former Northwestern University golfer who is playing his first CWI. Abrams was the only mid-am to break par in both rounds, shooting back-to-back 71s. Scott Maurer of Dallas is the only other player under par after two rounds, two shots back at 1 under.

Jeronimo Esteve (Windermere, Fla.) and reigning Texas Mid-Am Match Play champ Aaron Hickman (Tyler, Texas) are tied for fourth at even par. Two-time CWI champion Colby Harwell (San Antonio, Texas) and Birmingham National Invitational winner Brad Nurski (St. Joseph, Mo.) are tied for sixth at 2 over.

In the Senior Division, David Ortego (Spring, Texas) shot consecutive rounds of 70 to take a four-shot lead into the final round at 4 under par. Larry Nunez (Austin, Texas) and William Mitchell (Atlanta, Ga.) are tied for second at even par. Mitchell is coming off of a strong 4th place finish at the Timuquana Cup earlier this week.

The defending champion Lewis Stephenson (Burleson, Texas) is another shot behind, tied with Randy Haag (Orinda, Calif.) at 1 over.