PEBBLE BEACH (August 16, 2006) - Wednesday witnessed the first two rounds of match play at the NCGA Amateur Match Play Championship, and with it came the expected upsets and stellar performances.
One of those performances came from San Francisco City champion Will Johnson. The San Francisco GC caddie won his morning match against Jon Dechambeau of Riverbend GC 1-up, but the 1999 NCGA Amateur semifinalist wasn't satisfied: "I went to the range at lunch time and figured some things out." This was obvious in the afternoon as Johnson dusted Matt Fagundes of Fort Washington GCC, 5 and 4. The momentum from his win in the San Francisco City might have worn off, but Johnson seems at home at the NCGA Amateur, saying "I haven't played well since (the SF City - also a match-play event), but I think I play better in match-play tournaments."
Notable matches on the first day included two marquee pairings: NCGA Player of the the Year Bob Niger upending Valley Amateur champion Scott Hardy 2-up in the morning, and defending champion Eddie Olson squeaking by two-time State Amateur champion Casey Boyns in the afternoon.
The medalist jinx claimed one medalist on the first round as Kaz Hoffman of The Meadow Club was upset by Ben Scribner of Burlingame. Hoffman missed a short putt on 17 giving Scribner the advantage he protected with par on 18. The other medalist, Ryan Thornberry advanced with wins in both matches, defeating Conrad Nilmeier in the morning and Garth Watrous in the afternoon.
The quarterfinals and semifinals are set for Thursday morning and afternoon at Spyglass Hill, with the scheduled 36-hole finale set for Friday.
Match Play results:
To view match play results, click the tournament name at the top of this page and follow the results tab (amateurgolf.com membership requested).