NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. (Sept. 15, 2014) — Thirty-two matches were to be played Monday at Big Canyon Country Club. All are now complete, and a handful are more than noteworthy.
Jeff Burda, a Modesto, Calif. resident, went 20 holes with reigning Canadian Senior Amateur champion Doug Roxburgh, winning with a birdie on the par-five second hole. Burda got to three-up through 12 holes before Roxburgh, from Vancouver, fought back to force extra holes.
Burda has had a great 2014 thus far, winning the Trans-Miss Senior and the Southern California Senior.
Defending champion Doug Hanzel (pictured) is moving on to the round of 32 after a 4-and-3 win over Steven Poulson of North Salt Lake, Utah. The two were all square through five holes before Hanzel won four of the next six, clinching with a par on the 15th.
Hanzel, from Savannah, Ga., was this year's Georgia Senior Amateur winner — the second time he has won that championship. He was also the low amateur in the 2012 and 2013 U.S. Senior Opens.
“I hit it solidly and was in the fairway all day,” Hanzel told the USGA. “It’s tough when you get a couple of holes down to try and play catch-up. I was hitting greens and making pars. I played really good.”
Medalist Alan Fadel was the last to tee off on Monday, facing Stephen Fox of Huntington, W.V. Fadel, from Toledo, Ohio, was four-up through six prior to a slow comeback from Fox. With the match all square on the 18th tee, Fadel eagled the par-five finishing hole to squeeze into the round of 32.
“I got 4-up and it’s been awhile since I have done match play,” Fadel told the USGA. “I got ‘steery.’ You start guiding it. I finally got control and it took me quite a long time, but I think it will help me going forward.”
Hometown favorite Don Dubois won his opening-round match 2-and-1 over David Clement of Henderson, Ky. The Big Canyon member parred the 17th hole to clinch his victory.
“It is good to do well here,” Dubois told the USGA. “I got off to a slow start [Saturday]. I shot 40 in my first nine holes and that put me behind the 8-ball. I am just starting to get my rhythm. Anytime you are playing in a USGA event and you shot 40 on your first nine you have the pressure on you to produce after that.”
Dubois, understandably so, had a sizable gallery following him during Monday's match.
He'll face 2003 U.S. Mid-Amateur runner-up Bryan Norton, 55, of Mission Hills, Kan. on Tuesday morning.
ABOUT THE U.S. Senior Amateur
The USGA Senior Amateur is open to those
with a USGA Handicap Index of 7.4 or lower,
who are 55 or older on or before the day the
championship begins. It is one of 14 national
championships conducted annually by the
USGA, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.
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