PHILADELPHIA, Penn. (July 30, 2012) -- With the first round of the 99th Amateur Championship complete, Andrew Mason is back in the lead once again. Mason, of Huntingdon Valley Country Club & the 2011 Amateur Champion, carded a tournament low 64.
Mason, however, played a shaky front nine, notching 3 bogeys but recovering with 3 birdies and one eagle on the 7th (par 5, 515-yards). If his front nine was shaky and disappointing, then he would make up for it with his bogey-free back nine. Mason carded four birdies, and played 13 (par 4, 442-yards & 2nd most difficult hole) and 18 (par 4, 493-yards & 3rd most difficult hole) to perfection.
Not far off of Mason’s lead is The State Team Points Leader Sean Knapp. Knapp, of Pittsburgh National Golf Club, sits at 3–under par, 67 after his first round. Knapp turned at 2–under on his front nine and headed out tied with Mason. Knapp’s only slip-ups came on 13 & 16 (par 3, 170-yards). Knapp would redeem himself by sinking 3 birdies, including an impressive birdie on 18 in which his approach shot hit the flagstick and came to rest within a foot of the hole.
Nathan Smith from Pinecrest Country Club, finds himself squarely between Knapp and Mason. Smith, who sits just behind Knapp in The State Team Point standings, started his championship bid off with a quick birdie on 1 (par 4, 419-yards). Smith would go on to birdie 3 (par 3, 175-yards) & 5 (par 4, 372-yards), to turn at 3–under, 33 and go out in second place. Smith’s back nine would be enough to leave him alone in second place going into round two on Tuesday.
After 18-holes of play at Rolling Green Golf Club only ten players find themselves at par or better. Jeff Osberg, David Denlinger, and Brandon Dalinka are all sitting at 2–under while Cory Siegfried & Rick Stimmel posted a 1–under, 69. Following closely behind Siegfried and Stimmel are David Brown (4th in The USGA Team Point Standings) & Daniel Charen.
The 99th Amateur Championship continues Tuesday at Rolling Green Golf Club at 7:30am. Mason and Knapp resume play at 1:12 pm on the 10th tee, and Smith will tee-off at 8:30 am, also on the 10th tee.
There will be a cut to the low 40 players and ties after the second round.