Category: Championships

Iowa Junior, Girls’ Junior sets up for a race to the finish

Mother nature did not slow down during round two of the Iowa Junior and Girls’ Junior Amateur at Coldwater Golf Links, in Ames. Windy conditions proved to be a challenge for some players, while others embarked on the challenge. 

After carding a 72 (+1) in round one, Luke Harwick, from Dyersville, played consistent all day. Harwick shot a respectable even par of 71. In solo second from Des Moines after shooting 72 (+1) in round one, Owen Howe did it again in tough conditions and shot another 72 (+1). There are three tied for third at +4 for two rounds, including Thomas Rascon, from Burlington, shooting 70 (-1) and 76 (+5), from Cedar Rapids Garrett Nurre firing 74 (+3) and 72 (+1), along with Jack Rogers, of Iowa City, going 71 (E) and 75 (+4).

In the Girls’ Division Ames native Eden Lohrbach, played solid all day despite the windy conditions. After carding a 70 (-1) in the opening round, Lohrbach followed it up with a 72 (+1). Following the 73 (+2) Morgan Rupp, from Marion, shot in round one, Rupp stands in solo second after shooting an impressive even par round of 71. Ainsely Wilson, from Iowa City, is playing slow and steady golf. After opening up with an even par 71 in round one, Wilson stands in solo third after carding a 75 (+4) in round two.

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Leaderboard packed at Iowa Junior, Girls’ Junior Amateur

Coldwater Golf Links, located in Ames, is home of the 2024 Iowa Junior Amateur; and day one was one for the books. Yet the heat and wind did not hinder some of the players’ scores.

In the Boys’ Division, Axten Miller, from Arthur, fought through the conditions and carded an opening round of 69 (-2). There are three tied for second shooting 70 (-1) players that include Cade Sunde, West Des Moines, Leo Fiscus, Davenport and Burlington’s Tomas Rascon.

In the Girls’ Division both carding a 70 (-1), were Eden Lohrbach, of Ames and Jane Peterson, of Cedar Rapids, stand in a tie for first. Ainsley Wilson, of Iowa City, stands in solo third carding an even par 71.

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Smith’s win Father-Son title, Peters’ dominate once again

No tournament compares to the Father-Son and Parent-Child tournament held at Jester Park Golf Course in Granger.

Individuals may recognize the last name Smith, this time the father-son duo got it done. In the Father-Son Open Division Steve and Grant Smith shot an impressive 69 (-3) to stay clear of the rest of the runners-up by two. There was a three way tie of runner-up all shooting 71 (-1) consisting of Brian and Burke Pitz, Brian and Isaac Rodenberg, and Luke and Monte Meyer.

West Des Moines’ Ben and Tate Pettitt claim the victory of Father-Son Young Adult Division shooting a 75 (+3). Runner up was Jackson and Scott Anderson from Ottumwa shooting a 77 (+5). Followed by Jameson and Sean Honts of West Des Moines shooting 78 (+6).

Ben and Maura Peters, from Bettendorf, closed out a four-peat and fifth title overall, winning the Parent-Child Open Division shooting an impressive 68 (-4). Not too far behind were runner-ups Hannah and Nate Pettitt from Urbandale shooting 70 (-2). There was a tie for third at 76 (+4) between James and Roni Hook from Griswold and Mike and Taylor Phillips from New London. 

Jester Parks Par 3 Course saw a lot of action on Saturday. In the Father-Son Junior Division of eight and under David and Emmett Combs from West Des Moines claimed the title shooting 63 (+9). Runner-ups also out of West Des Moines were Oiliver and Hayden Zeidler shooting 67 (+13). From Cedar Falls Stacey and Luka Dunbar claimed third shooting 72 (+18).

In the Father-Son 9 & 10 Division Aaron and Beckham O’Brien from Ottumwa claimed the victory by one shot, shooting 65 (+11). Runner-ups were David and Carter Combs from West Des Moines shooting 66 (+12). In third was Griffin and Jason Sparks from Waukee shooting 67 (+13). 

From Urbandale Eric and Reese Buntenbach shot an even 70 (+16) to claim the title for the Parent-Child 8 & Under Division. In Runner-Up was Brookly and Wade Pettitt from Waukee. From Clive Ben and Blythe Hall claimed third shooting 79 (+25).

Sweeping the competition from West Des Moines, Ben and Hayden Pettitt claimed the title of the Parent-Child 9 & 10 Division shooting 59 (+5). Runner-Ups out of Cedar Rapids shooting 66 (+12). Coming in third from Ames was Sarah and Jack Van Hauen shooting 76 (+22).

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Honner blitzes field at Carroll Amateur

In the 2024 Carroll Amateur there never was a dull moment.

Coming off from just being medalist in the U.S. Amateur local qualifying at Glen Oaks earlier in the week, Luke Honner did it again. From Sioux Fall, Honner posted all three rounds under par carding two 68s (-2) and an impressive 64 (-6) in the final round. Honner never took his foot off the gas, he even carded an ace on the par 3 10th hole.

There was a tie for runner up at +3 between Spencer Clatt of Gilbert and Bennett Burger from Lake Mills. Clatt carded rounds of 71 (+1), 75 (+5), and an impressive 67 (-3); meanwhile Burger carded rounds of 69 (-1), 70 (even par), and 74 (+4).

In the Senior Division after the first day there was a tie for first between Ron Perterson out of Urbandale and Jeff Panek from Johnston at 74 (+4). In solo third was Jay Gregory from Lineville just one shot back shooting 75 (+5). The second day Peterson played steady all day shooting 72 (+2), claiming the title for Seniors, leaving a tie for runner-up between Panek carding a 75 (+5) and Gregory shooting a 74 (+4).

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Race to the finish at 14th IGA Women’s Four-Ball

From left – Michelle Klein, Laura Leszczynski, Ximena Benites and Maura Peters.

The final round of the 14th Women’s Four-Ball Championship was a race to the finish in the Championship Flight with Maura Peters and Ximena Benites coming out victorious. After Peters and Benites opened with an even par round of 71, the two of them took that as a learning experience before going into round two. 

“Yesterday we learned a lot about the golf course, where you can and can not hit the ball, the greens are tricky, and there are definitely sides of the hole where you do not want to be on,” Peters said. 

Making notes of all that, Peters and Benites capitalized on their mistakes and tallied up an impressive seven birdies shooting 64 (-7) on the day. Coming in runner-up Kaitlyn Hanna and Shannyn Volger shooting two of rounds 69 (-2) and 70 (-1). Leaving third to Erika Holmberg and Tatum Depuydt posting a pair of rounds of 69 (-2) and an even par 71.

In the First Flight Julianna Burkholder and Kendra Henningsen walked away with the win of rounds 74 (+3) and 70 (-1). Coming in second was Fiona Watson and Tish Boothe with rounds of 75 (+4) and 72 (+1). There was a tie for third between the sides of Erin Schaffer/Leanne Smith with rounds of 76 (+5) and 74 (+3) and Ava Lohrbach/Eden Lohrbach shooting 75 (+4) both days.

In the Second Flight the Delong sisters (Meghan and Rebecca) battled their way back to secure the win shooting 78 (+7) and 73 (+2). Runner-up was Courtney Hany and Jennie Jackson going 78 (+7) and 77 (+6). Coming in a clean third was Amy Haldeman and Lynn Mawe with rounds of 79 (+9) and 83 (+12).

Within the Championship Net Division Kelly Nelson and Lindsay Burry combined for a two day net score of -13. Coming in runner-up was Molly Ratchford and Natalie Henson with (-9), and there was a tie for third at -8.

In the Senior Division, defending champions Laura Leszczynski and Michelle Klein snacked their way to claim yet another victory. 

“We pre-planned our snacks better, loaded up with caffeine, and Advil as needed; as it was critical on the day,” said Leszczynski. 

After opening with 75 (+4) Leszczynski/Klein did not let up, shooting a 73 (+2). 

“There was not a lot of strategy but there was a lot of energy between the two of us,” Klein said. “We did not take our foot off the pedal at all.” 

There was a tie for runner-up between Carroll Dethrow/Janece Schwartzkopf shooting 77 (+6) and 74 (+3) along with Margene Grady/Rosalie Kubesheski finishing the two days with 76 (+5) and 75 (+4).

In the First FlightCarolyn Flynn/Mary Howell would come out to win with scores of 83 (+12) and 79 (+8). Runner-up was Jackie Warrick/Shirly Rochelle with scores of 84 (+13) and (+10). In third was Kelly Grimes/Sue Harmon shooting 83 (+12) both days.

Holding onto the Senior Net Division Linda McCullum and Sherry Schafer won with a two day net score of -13. Coming in runner-up was Gaylene Hammer and Jan Sewright with (-9), and in third was Ila Gilbert and Janis Owens at (-4).  

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Brown holds on, wins 46th Iowa Senior Amateur

In the end it was enough.

Jon Brown (right), who posted a 217 (+1) total, held on for victory at the 46th Iowa Senior Amateur hosted by Bent Tree Golf Course. With an opening rough 65, Brown admitted that was the difference in Council Bluffs.

“The first day everything went right,” Brown said. “I didn’t make many mistakes the next day (round two), but today, it’s hard playing with the lead. The conditions were really challenging (today). I missed some short putts early and the set the tone.”

After opening with a 39 (+3) on the front nine in the final round, Brown knew he needed to get to work as Joe Palmer and Chris Kramer, who would tie for runner-up when the dust had settled, gave chase.

“I found myself just trying to hang on,” Brown said. “I didn’t look at the leaderboard until the 18th tee. I knew what my group was doing, but not really anyone else. I just tried to do my best. Today was just one bad break after another and nothing was going right. I knew I needed to buckle down. Today with the wind it was tougher to drive the ball. The course felt tighter than the first two days. If you get out of position, with the greens being so fast, you all of sudden you have a downhill chip running away from you.”

Driving the ball and finding the fairways at the links-style layout of Bent Tree GC was the key to success according to Brown.

“I was able to put myself in positions to be aggressive and my speed with the putter was good,” Brown said. “Today, I had 5-6 footers that you had to be careful with or you could have 6-7 feet coming back. It was one of those days (today), it’s a little bit embarrassing shooting 79 to win, but I am thrilled I had a cushion. Chris Kramer played well today and I’ve had some many battles with Joe. I was never comfortable until I hit the 18th green.”

In the Super Senior Division Dave Gaer chased down the lead thanks to a final round 73 (+1) that included four birdies, good enough for a 222 total and a one shot win over Dave Waugh. Gaer commented that Bent Tree GC was a layout that you had to pick you spots of when to be aggressive and when to throttle down.

“This golf course you can’t force it,” Gaer said. “I got off to a good start today, that helped. I hit a lot of greens on the back nine. The wind blew steady all day and this is a good golf course. You have to use all your clubs in the bag. You get so many more chances here if you drive the ball well. It was a lot of fun (this week).

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Smith wins 61st Women’s Forever 39 Match Play

Leanne Smith (Indianola) secured the victory at the 61st Iowa Women’s Forever Match Play Championship at Ankeny Golf & Country Club. Some may recall Smith also won the 59th Women’s Iowa Forever 39 Match Play at Hillcrest Golf & Country Club in 2021. After shooting 38 (+2) in the qualifying round, Smith was seeded fifth. Smith was determined to capitalize on the format of match play.

“I just feel like you’re always in it, whether you really have it all together. Something may happen, you have your own fate in your hand,” Smith said.

In the her first match Smith played against No. 4 seed Carroll Dethrow (Nevada). The two of them both played solidly; but Smith would win 1 up. In round two’s match Smith was up against No. 8 eight seed Kelly Nelson (Waterloo) who defeated defending champion and No. 1 seed Fiona Watson (Des Moines) in round one. Smith would end up defeating Watson 1 up. In the final match Smith went against No. 3 seed Geri Huser (Altoona), Smith would go on to defeat Huser 2&1 to claim the overall title. 

In the first flight No. 3 seeded Rosalie Kubesheski (Dubuque) secured the victory. Along the way Kubesheski defeated No. 6 seed Nicol Jones (Ankeny) 3&1, No. 2 seed Mary Howell (Ames) 1up, and No. 4 seed Erin Schaffer (Johnston) 2&1.

Janis Owens (Cresten) No. 3 seed would breeze her way to win the second flight. Along the way Ownes would defeat No. 6 seed Bonnie Jones (Cedar Rapids) 2 up, No. 2 seed Cindy Morrison (Indianola) 2&1, and No. 8 seed Laura Pierce (Ankeny) 4&3.

Smith commented about her mom (Janis Owens) winning the second flight.

“It is so fun sharing all of this with my mom, we play in a lot of the same stuff and get to hang out together,” she said.

No. 3 seed Shirly Rochelle (Council Bluffs) held on and captured the victory in the third flight. Along the way Rochelle would beat No. 6 seed Juile Hartman (Greenfield) 2&1 No. 2 seed Kelly Grimes (Des Moines) in 10 holes. Before the final match No. 1 seed Darci Duey (Johnston) and No. 4 seed Becky Schwiete (Ankeny) fought hard for 16 holes before Schwiete won on the 17th hole. In the final Schwiete fell to Rochelle 2&1.

No. 1 seed Fiona Watson (Des Moines) battled back in the consultation bracket finals and won. Watson took down No. 4 seed Carroll Dethrow (Nevada) 3&2 and No. 2 seed Kathy Fortune (Rockwell City) 2&1.

In the first flight consultation bracket No. 2 seed Michell Klein (Jesup) won in style. Kline took down No. 3 seed Nicol Jones (Ankeney) 3&2 and Jan Sewright (Ankeny) in 11 holes to capture the win.

No. 1 seed Jan Herke (Ankeny) would win the second consultation bracket. In the process Herke defeated No. 4 seed Leighann Larocca (Clive) 1 up and No. 2 seed Sue Harmon (Slater) 3&2.

Julie Hartma (Greenfield) No. 3 seed would take home the victory in the third consultation bracket. Hartman would defeat No. 2 seed Lora Winter (Walford) and Mary Nelson (Ankeny) 2&1. 

Brown takes seven shot lead into final round of 46th Iowa Senior Amateur

It’s not always easy.

Many say following up a sensational round of golf on top of playing with the lead, knowing there are plenty of good golfers chasing you, might be two of the toughest hurdles in golf.

Jon Brown (right), who sizzled around Bent Tree Golf Course in the opening round of the 46th Iowa Senior Amateur with 10 birdies, managed only a lone birdie on the card in the second round, grew his lead to seven shots over Joe Palmer and Chris Kramer.

Mission accomplished.

Brown, in a second round that saw him collect 15 pars, will look to add a Iowa Senior Amateur title to his Iowa Golf Hall of Fame resume heading into the final round on Wednesday.

A similar story can be found in the Super Senior Division.

Rob Christensen finds himself ahead by six over a trio of players, following a steady round that also included 15 pars. A late-round bogey and double bogey for Christensen were all that left the Marshalltown golfer even farther out in front looking ahead to the final round.

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Smith wins 2024 Southeast Iowa Amateur

The Preserve on Rathbun Lake, home of the Southeast Iowa Amateur crowned a winner this past weekend. In the Open Division, a familiar name stood on top of the leaderboard; Grant Smith of (West Des Moines) held the lead after Saturday’s round with shooting a 67 (-5).

Not too far behind was Roman Roth (Wayland) shooting a 68 (-4), Kelly Brown (Marshalltown) shooting 70 (-2), and Jake Weissenburger who just won the Lake Creek Am carded a 71 (-1). Will Simpson (Pella) and Jack Winkel (Ankeny) were tied for fifth shooting an even par of 72. Entering into Sunday’s round it was anybody’s tournament.

Winkel would play steady and 71 (-1) and Simpson would move up the leaderboard and card an impressive bogey free 65 (-7). Smith and Roth would shoot a pair of 66 (-6), but Smith would stay on top and was crowned Champion. Followed by Roth runner-up and Simpson in third.

In the Senior Division there was a close race. In this six-man field after round one, Tony Newkirk (Des Moines) and Matt Steddom (State Center) both opened up with even rounds of 72. Followed by a tie for second with a pair of 77s (+5) by Troy Underhill and Jon Weeks (Slater). In solo third was Eric Jensen (Hedrick) shooting a 78 (+6).

Round two proved to be a battle till the end. Jensen shot a 78 (+8) sitting in third, while Newkirk and Steddom were going back and forth. In the end Newkirk’s birdie on #18 sealed the win shooting a 71 (-1). Steddom would finish in second, shooting an even round of 72.

Only two Super Seniors were in the field, but both Mark Urbanek (Hudson) and Bill Corrick (Fairfield) were not willing to give up. Urbanek opened with an 81 (+9) and Corrick an 83 (+11). Round two both Urbanek and Corrick played solidly. Corrick was making up ground and shot a 78 (+6), but Urbanek would end up staying victorious shooting a 79 (+7).

Brown opens with 65, Christensen leads by two in Super Senior Division

Early and often.

Jon Brown wasted little time climbing the leaderboard at the 46th Iowa Senior Amateur hosted by Bent Tree Golf Course, Council Bluffs. Brown, who was off early as one of the first handful of groups of the day, made a total of 10 birdies on the day, good enough for a 65 (-7) round.

Brown needed only 30 strokes on his back nine on Monday morning, including six birdies in those nine holes.

Joe Palmer finds himself chasing Brown after an up and down round of 71 (-1) of his own, while Sean Davis and Terry Cook posted 72s (E).

In the Super Senior Division, Rob Christensen (-1) leads by a pair of strokes over Dave Gaer and Tom Norton.

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