Oregon Senior: Hval, Patton reach finals
PORTLAND, Ore. (Sept. 28, 2012) -- Defending Champion Scott Hval of Portland, Ore., and 2012 Public Links Champion Byron Patton of Tigard, Ore., will square off tomorrow in the 29th Oregon Senior Amateur Men’s Championship Flight final.

Hval advanced by defeating Brad Karns of Vancouver, Wash., 2 & 1 in the afternoon semifinal match – although it wasn’t a leisurely stroll back to the finals for Hval early. Karns went 2up early with a five-foot birdie putt on the first hole and made par to Hval’s bogey on the 395-yard par-four second hole.

Hval birdied the par-four third hole, but gave it right back with a bogey on the par-three fourth. After taking holes five and six – both the par fives on the front side – and making a 20-foot birdie putt on the 405-yard ninth hole, Hval headed to the 10th hole 1up.

Both players matched pars on holes 10, 11 and 12. Karns bogeyed the 390-yard par four 13th hole to go 2down, winning the fourteenth hole to get it back to 1down. Hval then made a 12-foot birdie putt on the 16th to get back to 2up. Hval sealed the match to advance to the Championship flight final by halving the 152-yard par three 16th.

In his morning quarterfinal match, Hval defeated Denny Taylor of Gladstone, Ore., 3 & 2.

“I’ve played two USGA events in the last three weeks,” Hval said after his round. “I’ve been playing really well lately, so I figured I’d do fairly well – my plan for tomorrow is to go out and just play golf.”

Patton advanced by defeating Glen Luikart of Tualatin, Ore., 1up in an exciting back-and-forth semifinal that featured both players scrambling to score throughout much of the match.

Luikart got off to a quick 2up lead making par on the first hole and a birdie three on the second. Patton birdied the fourth to take the lead back to one, however, Luikart made pars on both front-side par fives while Patton made bogeys to go 3up.

Luikart made the turn 3up and Patton quickly took 10, 11 and 12 going birdie-par-birdie to get the match back to All Square. Luikart again went 1up after making par on the tough 388-yard par four 14th, but failed to hole a short birdie putt on 15 that would have put him 2up. Patton scrambled to make par on 16 to halve the hole.

On the 152-yard par three 17th, Luikart pushed his tee shot just right of the green, while Patton stuffed his tee shot to 3 feet and converted for birdie to get the match back to All Square.

On the 379-yard closing hole, Luikart tugged his tee shot a little left and ended up in the trees while Patton found the fairway. Luikart punched out ending up in the right greenside bunker, while Patton put his second shot about 8 feet past the hole. Luikart saved par pouring in his 15-footer from below the hole, but Patton drained his birdie putt to win the match.

In his morning quarterfinal match Patton defeated 2011 runner-up Gregg Guernsey of Vancouver, Wash., 1up.

“I’ve had a really good year for me, I set some goals and I feel good” Patton said. “It’s getting in the hole and that’s what counts, it doesn’t matter how you do it.”

In the Women’s Championship Flight Defending Champion Loree McKay and Debbie Friede of Portland, Ore., will meet in tomorrow’s final match.

McKay advanced by defeating past champion Joan Edwards-Powell of Portland, Ore., 5 & 4 in a rematch of the 2011 Senior Amateur final match. Friede advanced by defeating Rachel Whttington of Lake Oswego, Ore., 1up.

The Championship match in the women’s division will begin at 8:30 with the men following at 8:45.

In the First Flight final, Mark Bowler of Portland, Ore., will face Randy Grosz of Portland, Ore. Bowler defeated Jeff Spere of Portland, Ore., 2 & 1, while Grosz defeated Mike Gustafson of Eugene, Ore. 3 & 1 to advance.

ABOUT THE Oregon Senior Amateur

Entries are open to male and female amateur golfers 50 years of age or older with USGA Handicap Indexes of 18.1 or less and who are members in good standing of an OGA member club. The field will be limited to the lowest 96 qualified men. The defending champion and 31 finishers from the 18-hole stroke play qualifier will advance to the single elimination Championship flight match play portion of the competition, with the remaining entrants placed in single elimination match play flights according to score. There will be NO age bracket flights.

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