KINDER, LA (June 13, 2010)--It’s been a long year for Mandeville’s Ken Looper. He started this day one year ago leading the Louisiana Golf Association Amateur Championship by two shots, proceeded to shoot a two-under par 70 in the final round, but lost the Championship in a playoff to Andrew Loupe. Having had that experience a year ago made Sunday even sweeter as he left nothing to chance, firing a four-under par 67 to take home the trophy as the 91st Champion in this year’s edition of the LGA’s marquee event. He finished at 14-under par 270, taking the title by three shots over Luling’s Andrew Noto. Finishing alone in third three more shots back was Max Sellers of Baton Rouge.
The day started with Looper holding a three-shot edge over Noto and Sellers. Things tightened up on the par three third hole, Sellers making birdie two, Noto making par, and Looper taking a bogey, allowing his lead to slip to one over Sellers and two over Noto. Looper quickly righted the ship, making birdies on three of the next four holes, the string broken only by a bogey on the long par three 7th. He finished his front nine with a par five on the 9th, turning in one-under par 34. Sellers birdied the 9th, also finishing his front at one-under 34. Noto birdied #5 but gave it back with a bogey of his own on the 200 yard 7th, shooting even par 35.
A birdie by Noto on #11 brought the threesome back to where they started the day, Looper holding a three-shot advantage over both fellow-competitors. Noto birdied the par four 14th to creep within two, while Sellers fell another shot back with a bogey on the same hole. That’s when Looper decided to take matters into his own hands, making consecutive birdies on the 15th, 16th, and 17th holes, including a 40-footer on #17 that hit the back of the cup, hopped into the air, and fell in. Try as he might, and he did try hard, birdying both #16 and #18, Noto just had too much to overcome. His four-under par 32 on the back couldn’t have been much better, it just wasn’t quite enough. Looper and Noto both finished with four-under par scores of 67 on Sunday, with Sellers ending the day with a one-under round of 70.
Rounding out the top ten finishers were: Matthew Hungerman of Mandeville (4th/280), Patrick Christovich of New Orleans (T5/281), Robby McWilliams of Bossier City (T5/281), Austin Gutgsell of Mandeville (7th/282), Ben Suarez of Sulphur (8th/283), Hayden Stephens of Ruston (9th/284), and Jonathan Bale of Ruston (10th/285).
Other under par rounds on Sunday were turned in by Stephens (66), Suarez (67), Christovich (68), Gutgsell (68), Logan LaJack of Opelousas (67), Kyle Chauvin of Carencro (68), Hungerman (69), Joshua Camp of Rayne (69), Jason Noto of Luling (69), Paul Broussard of Lake Charles (70), Grady Brame of Hammond (70), Chad Bailey of Lafayette (70), and James Terrebonne of Galliano (70).
Koasati Pines at Coushatta, the Kevin Tucker design just northeast of Lake Charles in Kinder, played to a par of 71 at just over 7,100 yards on Sunday. The final round was played under hot and humid conditions, the day’s play interrupted briefly by a quick rain shower around Noon. The course again drew rave reviews from this field of the top amateur players in Louisiana.
Koasati Pines at Coushatta will also host the 2011 LGA Four-Ball Championship and the 2012 LGA Club Team Championship.
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