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NCGA Stroke Play: Vanier Takes First Round Lead

PEBBLE BEACH - He may be eligible for senior tournaments, but that didn't stop 55-year-old Gary Vanier from seizing the first-round lead in a tournament for younger players - the NCGA Stroke Play Championship. The Olympic Club member was runner-up in both the NCGA Senior Amateur and the State Senior Amateur earlier in the year, but had planned a schedule of competition with what he referred to as "the kids." Vanier's two-under-par 70 at 6,833-yard Poppy Hills was highlighted by three birdies, including back-to-back 4s on the par five 9th and 10th holes.

Vanier is closely followed by 2004 champion and St. Mary's golf coach Scott Hardy, 2005 State Amateur semifinalist Rick Reinsberg of Moraga, Sean McNamara of Los Altos and Erick Justesen of eClub Sacramento. All four players turned in 71s. Defending champion Bob Niger of Serrano is in the hunt, three strokes back.

Competitors are vying for a trophy that includes names such as Ken Venturi, Harvey Ward, George Archer and Johnny Miller. The Stroke Play Championship was stopped in 1967 in favor of the Four Ball Championship. The tournament was reborn in 2004.

The championship continues with tomorrow's second round after which a cut will be made to the low 40 scores and ties for Sunday's concluding round.

First Round Results

Gary Vanier Olympic Club 70 Sean McNamara Los Altos GCC 71 Erick Justesen Monterey Pines GC 71 Rick Reinsberg Moraga CC 71 Scott Hardy amateurgolf.com 71 Matthew Marshall La Rinconada CC 72 Martin Renaud The Ranch GC 72 Charles Chae Southbay GC 72 Randy Haag Olympic Club 72 Jon Bettencourt Sunnyside CC 73 Garett Wagner Discovery Bay CC 73 Bob Niger Serrano CC 73 Timothy Tipton Caddy Club of Pebble Beach 73 Andrew Biggadike Palo Alto GC 74 John Enright Olympic Club 74 William Moore Del Monte GC 74 Vincent Venard Ancil Hoffman GC 74 Jason Jones Southbay GC 74 Casey Boyns Del Monte GC 74 Matt Fagundes Fort Washington GCC 74 Christopher Carey Riverbend GC 75 Chris Massoletti Butte Creek CC 75 Eric Lillibridge Green Valley CC 75 Dennis Carson Peninsula GCC 75 John Desantis Corral de Tierra CC 76 Andrey Mindirgasov Pacific Grove GL 76 Conrad Nilmeier San Joaquin CC 76 David Leuterio El Macero CC 76 Elliott Wainwright Olympic Club 76 Brent Booth Palo Alto GC 76 Blair Myers Coyote Creek GC 77 Marc Peterson Del Rio CC 77 Kory Storer Peninsula GCC 77 Jon Dechambeau Riverbend GC 77 Al Bello Rio Vista GC 77 Steve Wilson Discovery Bay CC 77 Kaz Hoffman Meadow Club 77 Trent Tessler amateurgolf.com 77 Nick Rechedy Presidio Golf Club 77 Jason Stone Roddy Ranch GC 77 Jeff Fowler King City GC 77 Wes Leith Wildhorse Players' Club 77 Ross Vilinskas Elkhorn CC 77 Chris Kilkenny Beau Pre GC 77 Travis Childress Spring Valley GC 78 Brian Thompson Bayonet GC 78 Danny Buell Palo Alto Hills GCC 78 George McKean Riverbend GC 78 Jason Alves Seascape GC 78 Chris Jensen Sharon Heights GCC 78 Tyler Raber El Macero CC 78 Kyle Prolo Benicia GA 78 Robert Levin Wildhawk GC 78 Grahame Skytte Round Hill CC 78 Kevin Romer Empire Ranch GC 78 Jeffrey Hollis Brighton Crest CC 79 Andrew Damron B&B A/E GC 79 John Driver Stevinson Ranch GC 79 Brett Viboch Moraga CC 79 Jason Melvin Bayonet GC 80 Michael Jensen Sharon Heights GCC 80 Dan Cone Moraga CC 80 Austin Lundquist San Jose CC 80 Jared Rankins Spring Creek GCC 80 Scott Bubany Antelope Greens GC 80 Will Johnson North Ridge CC 80 Michael Gillette Haggin Oaks GC 80 Jake Yount Blackhawk CC 80 Jeff Hatfield Adobe Creek GC 81 Steve Halsey Woodlake Ranch GC 81 Ryan Bohning Monterey Pines GC 81 Andy Nevin Roddy Ranch GC 81 Chris Marin Cal State GC 81 Dean Tonneslan Fort Washington GCC 81 Beaux Schuh San Joaquin CC 81 Nick Amen Davis GC 81 Christopher Hall Greenhorn Creek GC 81 Mark Axelrode Orinda CC 81 Jeremy Harris Serrano CC 81 Jeff Burda Del Rio CC 81 Cory Synnestvedt Castlewood CC 82 Jeff Murphy Oakhurst CC 82 Jerry Ledzinski Quail Lodge Resort & GC 82 Robert Gregory Swenson Park GC 82 Jon Kosier Empire Ranch GC 82 Cory Powell Hunter Ranch GC 83 John Allison Valley Oaks GC 83 Darryl Donovan Cordevalle GC 83 John Justus Green Valley CC 83 Grant Rappleye Valley Hi CC 83 A.J. Hohn Elkhorn CC 83 Brian Razzari Palo Alto GC 84 Andrew Bowdish Cinnabar Hills GC 84 Jud Spencer Silver Creek Valley CC 84 Terry Foreman Lone Tree GC 84 Shaun Pienkos La Rinconada CC 85 David Borrelli The Bridges 85 Jeff Stewart Teal Bend GC 87 Joseph Schiebold Santa Rosa GCC 87 Steven Strong Windsor GC 87 Phillip Herrera Brookside CC 87 Peter Boese Palo Alto GC 89 Taylor Neal Moraga CC 89 Adam Beckman Woodbridge GCC 90 Keigo Painter Bushido GC 91 Jeff Johnson Ancil Hoffman GC 93

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