Champion Ben Peters (L) with Ned Jensen and Garrett Wagner (NCGA photo)
PEBBLE BEACH, CA (April 24, 2018) - Ben Peters had already proven that he was one of Northern California’s elite amateurs. On more than one occasion, he’s helped represent the NCGA in the annual Hanna-Wehrman Cup Matches against the Northern California PGA.
But the 33-year-old’s resume had lacked an NCGA championship. At least, until now.
On Tuesday at par-71 Poppy Hills Golf Course, Peters shot a final round 2-under 69 and defeated Ned Jensen on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff to capture the annual NCGA Public Links Championship. Peters would win with a par on the first playoff hole (par-4 10th) when Jensen missed his 4-footer for par.
“It’s been my goal. Coming from playing in a few USGA championships to be able to play in NCGA championships and then to eventually win one was the next goal,” Peters said. “To have it happen this quickly in the year is pretty phenomenal.”
Having trailed three-time winner Nick Moore and Keith Okasaki by two entering the final round, Peters made his move by being steady. He’d post three birdies to go against just one bogey. Meanwhile, both Moore and Okasaki slipped to rounds of 77.
“I’ve played with Nick before, and have beaten him before, so I knew I had a chance,” Peters said.
Related: Defending champ Nick Moore leads NCGA PubLinks
While Moore and Okasaki faded, Jensen, an E-Club San Francisco member, had also made a charge with a four birdie, one bogey 68. Jensen had a shot at passing Peters but finished his round with six straight pars.
With a win under his belt, Peters is already looking ahead to the rest of the season.
“I’ve wanted to win an NCGA championship for 10 years. Now to have my name on the trophy, it’s so special,” Peters said. “It’s a huge confidence builder to know I can get it done when I need to.”
Third place went to Garrett Wagner at 140 following a final round 70.
In the Golden Gate Net Flight, Andy Nordhoff of Bushwood CC fired a final round 71 to come in at 136 and defeat runner-up Dave Cressan of Half Moon Bay GL by three shots. Cressan had a final round 70. Third place went to Ken Rhodes of Windsor GC at 141 following a 69.
Patrick Tam of E-Club South Bay shot a final round 68 to come in at 139, defeating co- runner-ups Josh Torres of Eagle Ridge Rewards Club and Bruce Murray of Spring Valley GC by a stroke.
ABOUT THE NCGA PubLinks
The NCGA Public Links Championship began in 1966
at Spyglass Hill and is the premier event for the
player. The tournament has always included a
championship flight for players with handicap
indexes of 5.4 or less and
two handicap divisions for players with no handicap
must be bona fide public
who do not hold playing privileges in any course
from which the general public is excluded.
View Complete Tournament Information