RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (August 4, 2014) -- Sean Crocker has enjoyed quite the golfing summer already. It started out about as good as it can get, with the Westlake High School senior leading his team to its first-ever State Championship in June. He followed that up with a sixth place finish at the SCGA Amateur Championship before competing in his last U.S. Junior Amateur, where the USC-bound Crocker earned co-medalist honors before putting together a run that would eventually end in the quarterfinals. And on Monday, Crocker's match play success continued, as he defeated Joshua Park of La Habra 2 up to advance to the SCGA Match Play Championship Rd. of 16. The 17-year-old earned Runner-Up status at the event last year.
"Last year in the finals was one of the most fun matches I've played, but Niall [Platt] pulled it out. I really want that trophy this year," said Crocker.
With the two-time defending champion Platt having turned professional and therefore out of the field, the 7th SCGA Match Play Championship will see a first-time champion, and a number of golfers took the opportunity Monday to flex their muscles in the Rd. of 32 and start their charge towards the finals. Brett Silvernail of Ventura and Joe Ryon of Carlsbad won the most lopsided matches of the day, winning 7&5 and 7&6, respectively. Silvernail played his 13 holes in 2-under-par, defeating John Rudolph of San Diego, while Ryon played his 12 holes in 3-under-par to beat David Bartman of Los Angeles.
But despite his speedy victory Monday, Silvernail has a tough hill to climb next, as he will take on Crocker next.
"I really wasn't making any putts out there today, but I was able to take advantage of the par 5s," said Crocker of his first-round match against Park. "Tomorrow I hope to get my irons and putter working a little better."
Other notables to advance out of the Rd. of 32 include No. 1 seed and five-time SCGA Mid-Am Champion Tim Hogarth, who beat Drew Miller 3&1, and recent Loyola Marymount University golfer and Tyler Torano, who easily defeated Zach Hammond of Running Springs 6&5. Hogarth and Torano are both coming off of top 5 finishes at the SCGA Amateur Championship.
The 2014 playing of the Championship is being held at Red Hill CC and will last through Wednesday. The 16 victors Monday advance to Tuesday morning's Rd. of 16, which will be immediately followed by quarterfinal action.