Tilly is Medalist as Bracket is Set at NCGA Match Play
15 Aug 2017
by Yianni Gogonas of AmateurGolf.com

see also: View results for NCGA Match Play, Spyglass Hill Golf Course

[Left to Right] Bradley Knox, Finigan Tilly, and Shintaro Ban
[Left to Right] Bradley Knox, Finigan Tilly, and Shintaro Ban

PEBBLE BEACH, CA (August 15, 2017) — Finigan Tilly continued to display his dominance at Spyglass Hill this afternoon, shooting 68 to push his score for the medal play portion of the NCGA Match Play Championship to 10-under-par for the tournament, taking lone medalist honors.

Tilly, who opened on Monday with a 66, picked up today right where he left off, making a birdie on the first hole. Three more birdies, an eagle, and a couple of bogeys later and the UC Berkeley sophomore would be in the clubhouse with a score that would be beaten.

Related: Finigan Tilly on top at NCGA Match Play Qualifying

Tilly will play Kevin Fryer, who plays out of Ruby Hills Golf Club in Pleasanton, in the first match. Fryer managed to make his way into the match play field in a two-hole sudden-death playoff in which ten players would play for a total of seven spots.

Other sudden death qualifiers included Eddie Lai, who took home medalist honors at the California State Amateur at the Olympic Club in June. Lai is set to play fellow Pac-12 player and another former West Catholic Athletic League standout, Isaiah Salinda.

Salinda, who plays at Stanford, has a teammate who will also be facing a playoff qualifier. Bradley Knox will meet thirty-first seeded player Vernon McCalla in the first round. The 32-year-old McCalla finished medal play at 2-over-par (72-74=146), and though he is bit of long-shot playing against the 2016 U.S. Amateur qualifier, McCalla believes he’s got the stuff to take down the No. 2 seed.

“My mindset is just knowing I’m supposed to be here and that I can play with these guys,” mentions McCalla of the star-studded field full of top collegiate athletes playing at Spyglass Hill this week. “(I’m) mainly just focusing on the next shot ahead of me and what’s in my control.”

Not wanting to be left out of the fun, Kevin Velo posted bogey on the last, which would punch his ticket to the ten man playoff. Velo would breeze through the two playoff holes, advancing to match play where he will play against UNLV golfer and defending champion Shintaro Ban.

In regards to his match tomorrow, Velo was hesitant to comment explaining that he would rather let his play do the talking, but in terms of the playoff, Velo offered, “The odds were good so I wasn’t nervous.”

Hopefully for Velo he can ride that focused calm to an upset victory on Wednesday.

Matches will begin at 7:00 AM PT on Wednesday.

Results: NCGA Match Play
WinCAIsaiah SalindaSouth San Francisco, CA400
Runner-upCAShintaro BanSan Jose, CA260
SemifinalsCABryan BaumgartenGranite Bay, CA160
SemifinalsCADaniel ConnollySan Francisco, CA160
QuarterfinalsCAJesse BratzSacramento, CA120

View full results for NCGA Match Play


The oldest of the NCGA’s major events, the Amateur Match Play Championship, dates back to 1903 when it was first played at San Rafael GC. Varying formats have been used over the 100+ years of competition but today the tournament is 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying, followed by a 32-person seeded match play bracket. Pre-qualifying required for non-exempt players. Players must have a handicap index of 5.4 or less.

View Complete Tournament Information

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