URBANA (WCIA) — The Illinois men’s golf team opens up play in the NCAA Regional Monday in Michigan. It’s the first step in qualifying for the NCAA Championships and the Illini are hungry to get back after missing out last season for the first time in 13 years.

Adrien Dumont de Chassart and Tommy Kuhl have led the way all season, but the team’s depth has been a big difference in winning seven tournaments.

“Last year is a lot different than this year, obviously, because I was a freshman,” Illinois sophomore Jackson Buchanan said. “I was so new to all of it. I was just trying to soak it all in and I got to Regionals. You know, there’s a bunch of teams you’ve never seen before and it was it was weird for me, obviously, but but this year, being as good as we are, I think we’re ready and I feel like my game’s ready. I feel like all of our games are ready, and it’s definitely a different vibe.”

Eagle Eye Golf Club in Bath, Michigan the host site for the NCAA Regional. This is the 15th-straight NCAA Regional appearance for Illinois and the Orange and Blue the top seed in the three day, 54-hole event hosted by Michigan State. The top five teams advance to the NCAA Championships later this month in Arizona.

WCIA3 sports director Bret Beherns talked with sophomore Jackson Buchanan in a 1-on-1 interview, check that video out above.