Month: August 2020

Swegle finishes in a flurry, wins 71st Herman Sani Tournament

Professional Jeff Swegle (pictured above), of West Des Moines, grew up watching several of Iowa’s finest players win the Herman Sani Tournament presented by Coppola Enterprises. Following a dazzling eagle-birdie-birdie finish, he has now joined their ranks, clinching the 71st Herman Sani Tournament victory after firing a final round of 66 (-6) for a 54-hole total of 204 (-12). 

“It feels great”, Swegle said. “I’ve grown up with a lot of guys who have had success at this tournament – the elder statesmen now. It’s awesome to come back and compete against them and be able to win. It’s a great feeling.”

Swegle found himself 4-under par on the day after 13 holes, before back-to-back bogies temporarily derailed his comeback bid. Swegle didn’t flinch. He holed out from the bunker for eagle on the par-4 sixteenth and followed it up with birdies on the final two holes to secure his victory. 

He stressed the importance of avoiding errors while taking advantage of the birdie opportunities that Hyperion Field Club presents.

“I didn’t really keep mistakes off the card today, but I was able to make the birdies I needed,” Swegle said. “I was just trying to stay away from mistakes.”

Iowa Golf Hall of Famer Jon Brown, of Adel, carded a bogey-free round of 67 (-5) on Sunday to win the Amateur Division and finish second overall in the Open Division with a 54-hole tally of 205 (-11). In a three-way tie for third overall at 208 (-8) were PGA Professional Sean McCarty (Solon), Jon Olson (Ankeny), and Nate McCoy (Ankeny). 

IGA veteran Joe Palmer, of Norwalk, captured his third Senior Division title for the third time in the event (2013, 2017, 2020) with his wire-to-wire victory, posting rounds of 69-71-72 for a 54-hole total of 212 (-4). Norwalk’s Terry Cook finished runner-up, carding a final round of 70 (-2) to finish four strokes off of the lead. 

West Des Moines’ David Studer sealed the deal in the Super Senior Division, posting a final round of 75 (+3) to win three-shots clear of the field with a 54-hole total of 217 (+1). Two-time defending champion Rob Christensen, of Marshalltown, finished runner-up with a three-day tally of 220 (+4).

Click here for a recap of scoring

Follow those with Iowa ties at the 2020 U.S. Amateur

The par-4 eighth hole at Bandon Dunes golf course at Bandon Dunes Golf Resort in Bandon, Ore. on Saturday, June 15, 2019. (Copyright USGA/Steven Gibbons)

The first two rounds of stroke play qualifying for the 120th U.S. Amateur Championship begin today, Monday (Aug. 10) and Tuesday (Aug. 11), at 7,214-yard, par-72 Bandon Dunes Golf Resort (Bandon Dunes) and at 6,850-yard, par-71 Bandon Dunes Golf Resort (Bandon Trails), in Bandon, Ore.

Below are players with Iowa ties and their tee times (PST).
Monday (Aug. 10), BT, Hole #1 / Tuesday (Aug. 11), BD, Hole #1 – 8:39 a.m. / 12:52 p.m. – Tripp Kinney, Des Moines (Iowa State University)

Monday (Aug. 10), BD, Hole #1 / Tuesday (Aug. 11), BT, Hole #1 – 9:23 a.m. / 1:36 p.m. – Eugene Elliott, West Des Moines

Monday (Aug. 10), BD, Hole #1 / Tuesday (Aug. 11), BT, Hole #1 – 9:56 a.m. / 2:09 p.m. – Lachlan Barker, Australia (Iowa State University)

Monday (Aug. 10), BD, Hole #1 / Tuesday (Aug. 11), BT, Hole #1 – 11:13 a.m. / 7 a.m. – Alex Schaake, Omaha, Neb. (University of Iowa)

Also – Indianola’s Jake Marvelli will be caddying for Tanner Owens this week in Oregon.

The U.S. Amateur consists of 36 holes of stroke play on Aug. 10 and 11, after which the 264-player field will be reduced to the low 64 scorers. There will be six rounds of match play, starting Aug. 12. The quarterfinals and semifinals are slated for Friday, Aug. 14 and Saturday, Aug. 15, respectively. The championship is scheduled to conclude with a 36-hole final on Sunday, Aug. 16, starting at 9:30 a.m. PDT.

Click here for more information on this year’s event

Pettitt leads, several will give chase in final round of 71st Herman Sani Tournament

Several players took advantage of moving day at the 71st Herman Sani Tournament presented by Coppolla Enterprises, being held at Hyperion Field Club in Johnston.

Ben Pettitt, of West Des Moines, separated himself from the field by posting a bogey-free round of 66 (-6) for a 36-hole total of 135 (-9). Pettitt will be seeking his second Herman Sani Tournament title on Sunday, with his first victory coming back in 2001. One behind Pettitt is professional Sean McCarty, of Solon. McCarty carded a second round of 69 (-3) and is well positioned to make a run at his fifth Herman Sani Tournament title on Sunday. Nate McCoy, of Ankeny, is two back after a steady round of 70 (-2).

Joe Palmer, of Norwalk, continued his steady play in the Senior Division, posting a second round of 71 (-1) for a 36-hole total of 140 (-4). Palmer will carry a four-stroke advantage into the final round. Norwalk’s Gary Ellis is in second place after carding a second round of 71 (-1) and will be looking to make things interesting on Sunday.

West Des Moines’ David Studer found his rhythm on Saturday, making six birdies en route to shooting a round of 69 (-3) for a 36-hole total of 142 (-2). Two-time defending Super Senior Champion Rob Christensen, of Marshalltown, is seated five strokes back after a second round of 77 (+5).

Click here for a full recap of scoring

Logjam at the top of 71st Herman Sani Tournament

The leaderboard is jam-packed at Hyperion Field Club (pictured above) after the first day of play at the 71st Herman Sani Tournament presented by Coppola Enterprises. Friday’s opening round yielded over a dozen subpar rounds, and several IGA veterans are in the mix heading into the weekend.

There is a five-way tie at the top with the following players carding rounds of 67 (-5): J.D. Anderson (Johnston), Jack Dumas (Le Claire), Sani Scholar Charles Jahn (Sperry), PGA professional Sean McCarty (Solon), and Nate McCoy (Ankeny). McCarty is seeking his fifth Herman Sani Tournament title, with his most recent victory coming in 2016. McCoy is looking for a hat trick after capturing two Herman Sani Tournament titles in 2011 & 2015.

2020 Herman Sani Scholarship recipient Cole Davis, of Marshalltown, fired a three-under par round of 69 (-3) to place himself inside the top 10. Davis’ fine play earned him the Frohwein Award, which is presented to the low-Sani Scholar after the first round of play. All scholarship recipients were honored at a dinner following Friday’s round.

Norwalk’s Joe Palmer leads the way in the Senior Division after posting a round of 69 (-3). Palmer is looking for his second senior title of the summer after capturing a victory at the IGA Senior Match Play Championship back in May. Two-behind Palmer is 2020 Fort Dodge Senior Amateur Champion Terry Cook, of Norwalk.

IGA veteran Rob Christensen put together a solid round of 70 (-2) to earn a three-stroke advantage in the Super Senior Division. West Des Moines’ David Studer sits in second place.

Click here for a recap of scoring

71st Herman Sani Tournament set for Aug. 7-9 at Hyperion Field Club

The 71st Herman Sani Tournament presented by Coppola Enterprises is set for August 7-9, at Hyperion Field Club (pictured above), Johnston. Ricky Costello, the 2019 champion at Echo Valley Country Club returns to the field, as does Zach Steffen, winner of the 2018 event played at Hyperion Field Club.

Uniquely enough, both Costello and Steffen won their respective titles in a playoff. The ‘Sani’ tournament field is once again full of accomplished golfers and those looking to break on to the scene with a win at one of the most prestigious events held in Iowa.

The ‘Sani’ has a long and storied history at Hyperion Field Club, as the event was held there every year from 1953 – 2012. The event now rotates between Echo Valley Country Club and Hyperion Field Club featuring the state’s best amateur and professional golfers vying for the trophy.

The Herman Sani Scholarship Program, the benefactor of the yearly event, was established in 1958. Herman Sani, a Hyperion Field Club member, had a passion for golf and young people. Sani was the first director of the Iowa Golf Association and served the organization for over 30 years. This scholarship was created in his memory with the purpose to assist Iowa students to further their education. As of 2020, 187 college-bound students have been awarded this four-year scholarship.

Most of the scholarship money comes from the generous donations by individuals and corporate sponsors. Since 2013 the Coppola family of Norwalk has contributed $250,000 to the Herman Sani Scholarship Fund. The Iowa Golf Association and point events from around the state also make significant contributions to the fund. For more information about the scholarship visit our website at

Missouri’s Naegel wins 87th Iowa Open, Huseman low amateur

Photo courtesy of the Iowa Section PGA

Chris Naegel from Wildwood, MO won the 87th Iowa Open on Sunday, August 2 at Blue Top Ridge at Riverside. Naegel (pictured above) recorded rounds of 63-65-69=197, 19-under-par to win by four strokes over Tim O’Neal, of Savannah, GA. O’Neal didn’t go down without a fight – firing a final round 64 to put some heat on the leader.

Naegel, who carded a bogey (only his second of the week) on hole 14 and birdies on holes 3, 6, 9,14, and 17 in the final round to secure the win, made 21 birdies over the stretch of the three-day event and played the par 4 holes in -12.

Low amateur went to Andrew Huseman, of Ankeny, who posted rounds of 71-71-72 – 214 (-2) to outdistance Clive’s Andrew O’Brien by a stroke.

Click here to read more from the Iowa Open

Winning it again – Kubesheski takes home 55th Iowa Senior Women’s Amateur title

History seems to repeat itself – sometimes a lot.

Dubuque’s Rose Kubesheski (pictured above left) has found the secret at the Iowa Senior Women’s Amateur – now for the seventh time in her career after pulling away from the field at the 55th edition of the event today.

Kubesheski admitted that this year’s title wasn’t easy and her steady play on the back nine holes of Carroll Country Club was the key to success. Kubesheski posted rounds of 77-75 (+10) for the two-day event.

“I parred #10 today and got lucky on the ‘water’ hole,” she said. “My putts were going in and it’s just amazing (to win this championship).”

Kubesheski, who has battled an injury the last couple of years mentioned that this year’s victory tastes a little sweeter than other in the past.

“I am coming off an injury the last couple of years,” Kubesheski said. “I am still trying to work through that. But coming off the injury it means a lot this year to win, more so than other years because of that.”

Rockwell City’s Kathy Fortune (pictured above right), who finished just three back of Kubesheski, took home the Super Senior Division title, with rounds of 79-76 (+13). Janece Schwartzkopf, of Stuart, won the Net Division with rounds of 73-70 (+1).

Click here for a recap of scoring and full results

Olson etches name in history at NW Am

Jon Olson held off a couple of out of state players to win his first Northwest Amateur title on Sunday.  Olson, 40, of Ankeny, shot two rounds of 1-under-par 71 during Sunday’s 36-hole trek around Spencer Golf & Country Club to earn a three shot victory over Brett Benson of Bird Island, MN.  Lucas Schaefebauer of Aberdeen, SD finished in solo third, four shots back of Olson.

The win places Olson in esteemed company amongst some of the greatest to ever play the “Iowa Circuit”.  In Rick Brown’s recent book on the history of golf in Iowa, he identifies “Iowa’s Big Five” tournaments, which includes the Iowa Amateur, Northwest Amateur, Iowa Open, Iowa Masters and the Herman Sani Tournament.  Olson’s win on Sunday gives him titles in four of the five events, joining just six other players to ever accomplish the feat – Jon Brown, Gene Elliott, John Leichty, Mike McCoy, Brad Schuchat, & Steve Spray.  Only the Iowa Masters crown has evaded Olson to this point.  No player has won all five. 

Up by three shots heading into the final round, Olson did not get off to a great start, which was the exact opposite of Benson, his closest pursuer.  Olson made a bogey on his first hole of the final round and then made a double bogey on 3 before coming back with a birdie at four.  Meanwhile Benson was making birdie on three of his first four holes.  That stretch flipped the lead as Olson went from three up to start the afternoon round to two back.  

After that double bogey on three, Olson simply played smart, steady golf.  In addition to the birdie at four, he carded a birdie at 7 to tie Benson heading into the final nine holes.  Schaefbauer, who was three back after three rounds, posted 1 birdie and 8 pars to get within one of the two leaders thru 63 holes.  Olson’s final nine holes were simply better than that of Benson and Shaefbauer.  He shot a 2-under 34 while the others could each muster a 37, giving Olson the final cushion. 

On the Senior side, Chris Kramer of West Des Moines was the champion, shooting rounds of 66-71 to finish six shots clear of Brian Verduyn of Polk City.  Bret Taylor of Booneville finished in solo third.  

The Senior competition of the Northwest Amateur is complete after 36 holes. 

Kramer’s 66 on day one did not include a bogey.  Over the two rounds he managed nine birdies and just two bogeys.  Verduyn and Taylor both posted a 66 in their second rounds to make the move up the leaderboard. 

You can view complete results here.


Leaderboard packed at 55th Iowa Senior Women’s Amateur

It’s a battle at the top of the leaderboard at the 55th Iowa Senior Women’s Amateur Championship.

Six-time champion Rose Kubesheski, of Dubuque, and 2019 IGA Senior Women’s Player of the Year Kelly Grimes, of Indianola, both posted rounds of 77 (+6) today at Carroll Country Club. Sitting just two shots back of the leads include 2009 champion Kathy Fortune, Rockwell City, and Kathy Nelson, Denison.

Both leaders made a pair of birdies and will look to add to that total in tomorrow’s final round. Cooler temperatures in the morning welcomed the ladies before windy conditions took over as the theme for the day.

Click here for a recap of scoring

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