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Will Tamplin didn’t know much about the University of Richmond until he happened upon one of the school’s golfers one day.

That chance encounter proved important to the Asheville Christian Academy senior, who has signed to play college golf at the school.

“I met one of the current players, who is a senior now, at the driving range at a tournament and he had a Richmond bag,” Tamplin said. “I asked him about it. I was looking at places and he had nothing but good things to say about it. It had everything I needed after I looked into it.”

Tamplin’s only real knowledge of Richmond was seeing the Spiders play in the NCAA basketball tournament in 2010 and 2011. In 2011, the Spiders advanced to the Sweet 16.

So he learned more about the school, got in touch with the golf coach there and pursued a scholarship. He was offered last year, committed in June and signed with the program in November. He is the first scholarship golfer in ACA history.

“It’s a good academic school and that was first for me,” Tamplin said. “It’s a good size and isn’t very big. It’s a small Division I school … I’ll be able to work on my game every day at nice facilities and competing at a high level excites me a lot. Being able to test my game against guys from bigger schools and being about to compete for a D1 school appeals to me.”

Tamplin is a two-time NCISAA 2-A all-state performer and last year was named to the Citizen-Times All-WNC team. He maintained a stroke average of 75 for 18-hole matches.

He is focused on a return trip to the NCISAA state tournament with his teammates and right now ACA has almost qualified for the eight-team field.

“He’s very consistent. He’s very mechanical and technical about the game. He’s super careful about how he swings and he eyes each shot,” said first-year ACA coach Lucas LaFevers. “I think he looks at the shot, sees the shot in his head and then visualizes the shot he will make. It’s super interesting to watch because you can see all the stuff going through his head.”

“This year, basically, I’m learning to become a more well-rounded player and learning to hit different golf shots and becoming a more precise golfer,” said Tampli, who chose Richmond over Atlanta’s Emory University and Davidson College. “I feel like I have a lot of the tools I need but I’m just sharpening it up.”

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