Teams from both Norhtern Nevada and Southern Nevada competed in the prestigious 2016 Pacific Coast Amateur. The team from the Southern California Golf Association fired an even-par total of 284 to coast to a 9-stroke victory played the last week of July at the Seattle GOl Club. It was the 50th year of the event. In the individual race, Will Zalatoris, a presidential invite to the event from Plano, Texas, would come away as the champion in a two-hole playoff. –By Bill Bowman
The Southern Nevada Golf Association squad finished 13th with a 307 total (+19) while the Northern Nevada Golf Association group finished tied for 14th at 308, +20.
The SNGA squad was led by Ed Fryatt with a four-day total of 305, +17. That was good enough for a tie for 50th. Kenny Ebalo was next at 320 (+32) followed by Darrell Lutey at 331 (+43). For the NNGA team, Jordan Wright came in at 307 (+19) followed by David Hinitz at 314 (+26) and Jens Verhey at 324 (+36). Fryatt, the former UNLV All-American and PGA Tour player was the best finisher from the Nevada State Golf Association.
“The course was tough, there’s no doubt about that,” Fryatt said. “If you shot under par, that was a good score. I just didn’t play well but it was a great experience.”
Fryatt added he was obviously disappointed in his play. “I didn’t drive it well and I didn’t hit my irons well,” he said. “I putted well and my putter probably saved me. Any of those rounds could have been a 78, but any of them could have been a 73. Unfortunately that’s the best I could have shot because my swing was just out of sync. When you’re on the course you’re just going through your mental Rolodex trying to find the answer and I didn’t.”
The champion Zalatoris’ rounds were 74-69-70-72—285. But, it wasn’t a winning score in the clubhouse as there were still three players left on the course in the final group.
While Zalatoris birdied the final hole to get to his final total, San Diego’s Nahum Mendoza had a chance to birdie the final hole to win outright. Mendoza was short-sided in a bunker on the final hole, but didn’t get up and down for a birdie and the two headed for a playoff.
Both players parred the first hole in the playoff before a tap-in par on the second playoff hole and earned the title and the Dr. Ed Updegraff trophy.
There was a tie for third as Ryann Ree of Rendondo Beach, Calif. (71-73-72-71-287) and first-round leader K.K. Limbhasut of Bangkok, Thailand (68-69-75-75-287) shared the spot.
The 2017 Pacific Coast Amateur Championship will stay in Washington as Chambers Bay, a 7,165-yard, par-72 layout will be the site of the 51st tournament. The event will be held July 25-29, 2017.