Palm Beach Senior Amateur champion Kai Niemi
(Pam Beach Golf Association Photo)
PALM CITY, FL (September 24, 2016) -- The rain delay took three hours, but for Kai Niemi it was worth the wait. After finishing tied at even-par with Frank Babusik, Niemi was able to capture the Palm Beach Senior Amateur title in a sudden death playoff at the Harbour Ridge Yacht and Country Club's River Ridge Course.
Niemi began the day 2-under thanks to a 70 on Friday. Although it wasn't easy he was able to make his way into the playoff. The day began with a birdie, however, after four bogeys followed, Niemi had fallen to 1-over. Needing a birdie late to stay alive, Niemi got one on the par-4 17th.
Babusik was even-par when his final round began and he got as low as 3-under following birdies on the 3rd, 9th and 11th holes. A stumble down the stretch followed, as Babusik carded a bogey and a double-bogey to fall back to even-par.
J.R. Reynolds, who shot the round of the tournament with a 3-under 69 on Saturday, was third at 1-over. First round co-leader Chris Hubman ended up 2-over for a fourth place finish while Jeff Horn and Reidar Brekke were 4-over.
ROUND ONE RECAP
With the opening 18-holes in the books Kai Niemi and Chris Hubman share the first round Palm Beach Senior Amateur lead. The duo opened with 2-under 70's at the Harbour Ridge Yacht and Country Club's River Ridge Course and are two clear of the field.
Niemi got off to a torrid start with birdies on the 2nd and 4th holes before rolling in an eagle on the par-5 5th to reach 4-under. A double-bogey on No. 8 dropped him to 2-under but a birdie on No. 10 got his tally back to 3-under.
It was mostly steady golf on the way in with the exception of a bogey on the 17th.
Hubman reached 2-under with a five birdie, three bogey day. From Nos. 6-16 Hubman did most of his positive work as he carded all of his birdies and just on bogey during the stretch.
Frank Babusik and Craig Howell will begin the final round two behind at even-par while Walt Taormina and David Tassell share fifth at 1-over.
View results for Palm Beach County Senior Amateur Golf Championship